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Whitewater Fire

Unit Information

Willamette National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
3106 Pierce Parkway
Springfield, OR 97477

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Willamette Fire Update - September 3

Whitewater Fire Wildfire
News – 9/3/2017

Red Flag Warning Extended with High Temperatures and Dry Conditions

A Red Flag Warning is in effect and has been extended through Tuesday due to dry conditions and near record temperatures. The humidity at high elevations remains low, at under 30 percent, and is not expected to increase until Wednesday evening, when thunderstorms become possible.

The Whitewater Fire continues to produce smoke and haze impacting Breitenbush and Detroit. Smoke from the Jones, Rebel and Horse Creek Complex fires continues to impact the communities of Oakridge and Mckenzie Bridge.

There is a Horse Creek Complex and Rebel Fire community meeting this evening, Sunday, September 3, at 7pm at the Upper McKenzie Community Center, 54745 McKenzie River Drive, Blue River, Oregon.

Do Your Part. Don’t Let a Wildfire Start. Be sure chains and other metal parts aren't dragging from your vehicle - they throw sparks. Also, check your tire pressure. Driving on an exposed wheel rim can cause sparks.

If you fly, we can’t. Every time a drone is spotted anywhere within the Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) area, all aircraft must land until we can be sure the drone is clear of this area. Visit www.nifc.gov/drones for more information.

Approximately 968 personnel are assigned to the fires listed below. Resources include hand crews, helicopters, engines, dozers, water tenders, masticators, feller-bunchers, and chippers under the management of Bea Day’s Southwest Area Type 1 Incident Management Team. Feller-bunchers and chippers are used to reduce hazardous fuel loads around critical areas, such as structures, roadways, and firelines.

MCKENZIE RIVER RANGER DISTRICT see Potato Hill, Rebel, & Horse Creek Complex on InciWeb for updates on the following fires

Crews completed line around the POTATO HILL FIRE (199 ac)and will monitor the area as the fire continues to smolder in heavy fuels. Smoke may impact Highway 20 visibility at night and early morning.Please slow down and turn your headlights on while traveling on US20, and watch for firefighters working in the area.

Resources are preparing line along FSR 19 (Aufderheide Drive) to keep the REBEL FIRE (6,554 ac)east of the road. If conditions are favorable, they may use firing operations as needed to hold the line. Firefighters continue to monitor and patrol the BOX CANYON FIRE (27 ac)and PETE FIRE (51 ac).

The HORSE CREEK COMPLEX (10,054 combined acres) includes the Avenue Fire, burning three miles southeast of McKenzie Bridge, and nearby wilderness fires Olallie Lookout, Separation, and Roney Fires.Firefighters are monitoring the wilderness fires by air and MODIS Thermal Satellite. Resources continue developing plans and constructing contingency lines to protect values at risk.

The public can expect to see columns form over the SEPARATION FIRE (6,689 ac) today, which increases the potential for spot fires.

The AVENUE FIRE (791 ac)grew to the north towards Foley Springs. Structure protection crews are setting sprinkler systems around values at risk to increase humidity in the area. Firefighters are conducting assessments in the McKenzie Bridge area, evaluating values at risk.

Due to the Avenue Fire, the communities of Rainbow, McKenzie Bridge, and Belknap Springs as well as residents along East King Drive and North Bank Road and surrounding areas are in Level 1 (Ready) evacuation status.Sign up for Lane County Emergency Alerts at lanecounty.org/prepare or call the Lane County Sheriff’s Office for more info at 541-682-4150.

Firefighters are monitoring the OLALLIE LOOKOUT FIRE (519 ac)and RONEY FIRE (2,055 ac)by air and MODIS Thermal Satellite.

DETROIT RANGER DISTRICT – see Whitewater Fire on InciWeb for updates on the following fires

The SCORPION FIRE (209 ac)grew to the north yesterday where it is burning in steep, inaccessible forest lands and heavy fuels. Crews continue to hold and scout opportunities to limit the fire’s spread, while using chippers around summer homes north of the Forest Service Road FSR 46 (Breitenbush Road) to protect structures. FSR 46 is currently open, but motorists may encounter delays.

The WHITEWATER FIRE (10,524 ac)and LITTLE DEVIL FIRE (698 ac) are growing toward one another. As smoke lifts, movement of fires is anticipated. The FRENCH FIRE (2 ac)remains inactive.

Due to the Scorpion and Little Devil Fires, the Breitenbush Hot Springs Area remains in Level 1 (Ready) evacuation status.Sign up for Marion County Emergency Alerts at www.co.marion.or.us or call (503) 588-5108 for more info.

Given complexity of the current wildfire situation, availability of firefighting resources, limited ability to utilize aircraft when smoke impacts visibility, and safety concerns for working in steep and remote terrain, firefighters are focused on protecting values at risk where they can do so safely and effectively.

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