ODF Engines and Personnel Help Wildfire Efforts in Southern California

ODF Engines and Personnel Help Wildfire Efforts in Southern California

Some 25 engines and over 60 firefighting personnel from Oregon Department of Forestry districts and forest protective associations are in Southern California helping battle the 230,500-acre Thomas Fire.

The Oregon firefighters traveled from various points around the state to California on Friday and Saturday. All arrived over the weekend at the California Southern Region Prado Mobilization Center in Chino, about 35 miles east of Los Angeles.
 

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KCC to Host Wildland Firefighter Open House

KCC to Host Wildland Firefighter Open House

KLAMATH FALLS – Klamath Community College will host its second Wildland Firefighter Round-up this month.

This open house is aimed at connecting local job seekers to seasonal wildland firefighting positions available in the Klamath Basin region. The event is at KCC Oct. 27, 2 to 5 p.m., in the Work Skills Technology Center, room 820.

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Fire Season Ends on All ODF Lands

Fire Season Ends on All ODF Lands

SALEM, Ore. -- Fire season has officially ended on all private and public lands protected by Oregon Department of Forestry districts statewide. The last district to end its fire season -- the Southwest Oregon District covering Josephine and Jackson counties -- did so this morning at 9 a.m.

Although fire season began a few weeks later this year because of a wet winter and spring in much of the state, fuels over the summer quickly dried out. Statewide across all jurisdictions there were almost 2,000 wildfires this year. About half of those started on the 16.2 million acres of forestland protected by ODF. However, of the approximately 678,000 acres burned by wildfire in Oregon this year, only about 6 percent was land protected by ODF.

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Fire Season Ends in Klamath & Lake Counties

Fire Season Ends in Klamath & Lake Counties

Klamath Falls, Ore. - Klamath and Lake Counties’ 2017 Fire Season is officially ending Friday, October 20, 2017 at 12:01 am. “Fire Season” for the area has been in effect since June 5th.   During the 2017 season, the Klamath-Lake District has documented 129 fires that burned approximately 1,937 acres on ODF protected lands. For the ODF Klamath-Lake District, just about half of the total number of fire starts came from numerous summer lightning storm events. The other half were human caused ignitions.   

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ODF Sends Fire Engine Crews to Help with Northern California Wildfires

ODF Sends Fire Engine Crews to Help with Northern California Wildfires

MEDFORD, Ore. -- Four Oregon Department of Forestry fire engines and their two-person crews arrived in Northern California yesterday to help with wildfires that have been ravaging parts of that state. ODF's Southwest and Klamath-Lake districts bordering California sent the crews as part of a long-standing mutual fire aid agreement between U.S. states. Two of the engines came from Grants Pass, one from Klamath Falls and one from Medford. A ninth ODF employee also went from Medford in a support role. Because of more than a dozen wind-driven wildfires, California's governor has declared a fire emergency in three counties - Napa, Sonoma and Yuba. These fast-moving fires have caused fatalities, burned down homes and businesses, caused hurried evacuations and fully engaged local and state firefighting resources. The ODF teams will be put to use where the Northern California incident command deems they are needed most.
 

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Husband and Wife Deceased in Plane Crash in Klamath County

Husband and Wife Deceased in Plane Crash in Klamath County

**Update**
The plane has been identified as a Cirrus SR-22 and the investigation is still continuing to determine the cause and who was the pilot. An aerial photo has been added to the release.

On October 1, 2017 at 10:43 AM, an Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Trooper was working with a volunteer between Burton Butte and Old Baldy Mtn. in a remote section of western Klamath County near the Pacific Crest Trail when they heard a low flying airplane. The plane sounded as if it was having engine trouble. The cloud cover was at treetop level and the airplane was not visible.

The plane was heard making impact to the ground less than a mile away. First responders immediately started getting resources en route to assist and locate the plane. An initial check of the area by Troopers and subsequent searches by Search and Rescue were unable to locate the plane. Weather conditions improved, but it wasn't until the morning of October 2nd before a helicopter was able to spot the wreckage and rescuers made their way through the thick timber to the location.

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2017 Fire Season Still in Effect in Klamath and Lake Counties

2017 Fire Season Still in Effect in Klamath and Lake Counties

KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. - Fire officials in Klamath and Lake Counties would like to remind the public that fire season is still in effect on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Klamath-Lake District. This affects all private, county, state forestlands, and those Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands under contract and agreement west and east of Highway 97 in Klamath County respectively.

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700 Sixth Graders Tour the Forest

Michelle Cottier a firefighter with ODF geared up Feanix Hightower of Chiloquin Elementary and instructs her how to use the fire hose of  Oregon Department of Forestry  Engine 8150 at the 54th Annual Klamath County Forest Tour. Image:  Brian Gailey

Michelle Cottier a firefighter with ODF geared up Feanix Hightower of Chiloquin Elementary and instructs her how to use the fire hose of Oregon Department of Forestry Engine 8150 at the 54th Annual Klamath County Forest Tour. Image: Brian Gailey

Keno Ore. - Located 11 miles out side of Keno Oregon near the Spencer Creek Drainage off Clover Creek Road is the Klamath Forestry Tour. For the past 54 years, this tour has been educating Klamath County sixth graders through individual stations about; forest products, recreation, survival, reforestation, tree identity, soils, water, forest management, fire suppression and wildlife.

"Sixth graders spend two days in the forest, learning about the forest...after 54 years we are expecting the great grandchildren of the original students that attended all those years ago to attend this week." Daniel Leavell.

Leavell adds, "It's a wonderful way to get to know the forest and uses of the forest and to teach them about different aspects of the forest environment."

Students arrived by bus to the location where they lined up to head to the different stations. Each station taught the classes something different about the forest.

At the Tree Identity station, Mr. Mike McKittrick and his students from Ferguson Elemtary learned how to use a classification diagram to determine if a tree was a True Fir or a Douglas Fir. Students also were able to identify what a Sugar Pine is as well.

At the soil station, Mrs. Kay Linmans' class from Henley Elementary learned about different layers of soil and how they impact all living things above ground.

Students from all local elementary schools were able to participate in this program. Students from Mrs. Sara Thomas' sixth grade class from Triad were able to hear about survival techniques if they were to become lost in the woods.

"We think of ourselves as being a rural area, but it is surprising how many kids in town, that this is their only experience out here. Getting out into the forest and seeing what really goes on." says Ron Loveness.

At the forest management station, Patrick Peterson and Jennifer Case from the Oregon Department of Forestry obtained a core sample from a fir tree. This core sample, was then used to educate the kids on how a tree can be aged without being harvested. This technique is used to better understand the forest and help selectively harvest trees for a healthier forest.

The tree they captured a sample on counted to be 96 years old. That means when the Forestry Tour started in 1963, that fir was a young 42 years old.

VIDEOS
Live Interview - http://bit.ly/2fmZSwj
Reforestation - http://bit.ly/2fmUaL4 
Forest Management - http://bit.ly/2fmZL3R
Recreation / Survival - http://bit.ly/2fmvNNg

VIDEO: Educating on Forest Management

Keno Ore. - At the 54th Annual Klamath County Forest Tour, Patrick Peterson and Jennifer Case from the Oregon Department of Forestry speak to Mrs. Sara Thomas' sixth grade class from Triad School about forest management techniques. They also speak about how they got started working in the forest.

Over the past two days up to 700 Klamath County sixth graders have been able to visit the forestry tour learning about the forest through designated stations where they rotate through every 15 minutes. This station is on forest management.

VIDEO: How to Survive in the Woods

Keno Ore. - At the 54th Annual Klamath County Forest Tour - Diego Montoya and Brittany Lindsey of the Oregon Department of Forestry and Bryan Begay of the US Forest Service explain survival techniques to 6th graders from Triad.

Over the past two days up to 700 Klamath County sixth graders have been able to visit the forestry tour learning about the forest through designated stations where they rotate through every 15 minutes. This station is on survial in the woods.

Large Interagency Wildfires [Map]

*** A follow up to a story we brought you an hour ago (http://bit.ly/2fwUd3L). Even with rains reducing fire restrictions, fire season is still in full effect. ***

The rain and cooler weather are a welcome change for #ORFireSeason2017, offering some help to firefighters across the #PNW.

However, as you can see from the updated map below, it will take more than a few days of rain to end this challenging season.

Please check and follow your local fire restrictions before burning those debris piles or campfires. Support our firefighters by preventing future wildfires.
https://gisapps.odf.oregon.gov/firerestrictions/PFR.html

Due to Rains National Forest Districts Reduce Fire Restrictions

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ROGUE RIVER SISKIYOU NF & ODF REDUCES TO STAGE 2 RESTRICTIONS
September 18, 2017

EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY: With Arrival of Rainy Weather, Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest Decreases Campfire Restrictions

As stormy weather brings much-needed rain to all areas across southwestern Oregon, the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest is reducing the level of restrictions that apply to campfires across the Forest. Effective immediately, the RRSNF moves to Stage 2 restrictions, Forest-wide.

Campfires: Stage 2 Restrictions allow the building of campfires only in Forest Service-constructed fire rings made of concrete or metal and located in designated recreation sites. Please see the list and maps of recreation sites. The use of propane or liquid fuel-powered commercial stoves is also permitted. 

Smoking: Smoking is allowed only in vehicles, buildings and designated recreation sites, in areas clear of vegetation measuring at least 3 feet in diameter, or aboard watercraft on waterways.

Internal Combustible Engines: Operating an internal combustible engine is only allowed in designated parking area or on a motor vehicle on open Forest roads. Other exemptions include:
• While aboard watercraft, moving or at rest, on waterways.
• The use of generators in designated recreation sites.

Welding and Torches: Welding or the operating of an acetylene torch or other torch with an open flame is prohibited.

With fires still active across the RRSNF, area closures are still effective in various areas, including (but not limited to) the Sky Lakes and Red Buttes Wildernesses, the RRSNF-administered portion of the Rogue-Umpqua Divide Wilderness, and the Prospect OHV Trail System. A list of area closures is available on the RRSNF Fire Information Page.

Visitors to the Forest are encouraged to continue to be cautious with fire while in the woods. Forest officials remind recreationists to never abandon a campfire, always ensuring that an extinguished campfire is cool to the touch.

For more information and to see the full text of the Forest, including a list of designated recreation sites where campfires are permitted, visithttp://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/rogue-siskiyou/alerts-notices.


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MODERATE FIRE DANGER LEVEL & IFPL II TAKE EFFECT

Rain Decreases both Public and Industrial Fire Restrictions

The recent rain and cooler temperatures have made it possible to decrease fire restrictions across southwest Oregon. Effective immediately, the fire danger level on ODF Southwest Oregon District protected lands in Jackson and Josephine counties will lower to “moderate” (blue). 

In addition, fire prevention measures for logging, non-logging industrial operations, and all other commercial operations will lessen. Industrial Fire Precaution Level II (two) takes effect today.

These regulations affect 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF’s Southwest Oregon District. 

As a reminder, public fire restrictions which will remain in effect, include:
• No debris burning, including piles and debris burned in burn barrels.

• No fireworks on forestlands.

• Exploding targets and tracer ammunition, or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base, are prohibited.

• Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used in other locations.

• Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads; one shovel and one gallon of water, or one 2.5 pound or larger fire extinguisher, is required while traveling.

• Smoking while traveling will only be allowed in enclosed vehicles on improved roads, in boats on the water and other specifically designated locations.

• Chain saws may not be used between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during moderate fire danger. During hours outside of this time frame, chain saws may be used but require that the operator have one shovel and one 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the work site. A fire watch is also required for one hour after each chainsaw use.

• Cutting, grinding, and welding of metal is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during moderate fire danger. These activities will be allowed during hours outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.

• The mowing of dead or dried grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during moderate fire danger. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or equipment used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.

• Any other spark-emitting internal combustion engine-use not specifically mentioned is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. during moderate fire danger. Use of any spark-emitting internal combustion engine is allowed outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.

• Any electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller’s instructions for fire safe operation.

Under IFPL II (Two) – limited shutdown, which is entirely separate from all public fire restrictions, the following may operate after 8 p.m. and up until 1 p.m. daily:

• Power saws, except at loading sites.
• Feller-bunchers with rotary head saws.
• Cable yarding.
• Blasting.
• Welding, cutting, or grinding of metal.

Fire season information is also available online at our Facebook page @ODFSouthwest and our website: www.swofire.com.


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South Central Oregon precaution levels lowered to IFPL 2

LAKEVIEW, Ore. – As of Tuesday morning, the South Central Oregon fire danger level will be reduced from extreme to high due to changing weather conditions.

Effective September 19, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. the Fremont-Winema National Forest, Lakeview District BLM and Sheldon-Hart Mountain National Wildlife Refuge Complex have lowered the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) to IFPL- 2 and Public Use Restrictions will be rescinded on BLM, Forest Service and National Fish & Wildlife protected lands.

Although fire danger is decreasing, conditions are still dry. Due to these conditions we ask the public to be careful with anything that can throw a spark, careless ignitions have the potential to start new wildfires. Also, make sure campfires are completely out and cold to the touch before leaving while out recreating or hunting.

Information on current Public Use Restrictions and IFPL can be obtained by calling the Lakeview Interagency Fire Center at 541-947-6259 or visiting:http://scofmp.org/index.shtml

For information on specific restrictions in areas under ODF’s fire protection, please visithttp://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/Pages/Restrictions.aspx.

The South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership is an interagency fire management program that provides comprehensive wildland fire service to south central Oregon and northwest Nevada. The partnership strives to achieve a more efficient, effective and integrated interagency fire management program for all participating agencies on the lands administered and protected by each agency.

Participating agencies include: Fremont-Winema National Forest, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Lakeview District, Sheldon-Hart Mountain National Wildlife Refuge Complex, Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex, Crater Lake National Park and Klamath-Lake District Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF).

For more information, contact Fire Information Officer Sarah Saarloos with the South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership at 541-219-0515 or ssaarloos@fs.fed.us. Daily wildfire information, maps and social media links can be found at SCOFMP Blog: http://bit.ly/2sK5YH

-- 

Fire Information Staff
South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership

For more prescribed/wildland fire information, maps, and updates:

• Facebook: http://bit.ly/2qsw4C7
• Twitter: http://bit.ly/2q40L0X
• Inciweb: http://bit.ly/2pzTCSv
• SCOFMP Blog: http://bit.ly/2sOBXai
• FLICKR: http://bit.ly/2sGyBJG
• LIFC SITE: http://bit.ly/2s4vprt
• YouTube: http://bit.ly/2t6R1nP

Fire Danger Drops to High

**** Jackson and Josephine Counties ****

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A combination of higher relative humidities and cooler temperatures across southwest Oregon have made it possible to ease-off on some fire prevention regulations. The fire danger level on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands in Jackson and Josephine counties will be lowered to “high” (yellow) tomorrow, September 15, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level will remain at a level 3 (three).

These regulations affect 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF Southwest Oregon District.

Restrictions on the public use of chain saws, brush cutters and other power-driven or spark-emitting machinery are being slightly relaxed, allowing the use of equipment until 10:00 a.m. and after 8 p.m. Today will be the last day power-driven and/or spark-emitting machinery is completely prohibited.

Other fire prevention regulations which will remain in effect, include:

• No debris burning, including piles and debris burned in burn barrels.

• No fireworks on forestlands.

• Exploding targets and tracer ammunition, or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base, are prohibited.

• Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used in other locations.

• Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads; one shovel and one gallon of water, or one 2.5 pound or larger fire extinguisher, is required while traveling.

• Smoking while traveling will only be allowed in enclosed vehicles on improved roads, in boats on the water and other specifically designated locations.

• Chain saws may not be used between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. During hours outside of this time frame, chain saws may be used but require that the operator have one shovel and one 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the work site. A fire watch is also required for one hour after each chainsaw use.

• Cutting, grinding, and welding of metal is not allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. These activities will be allowed during hours outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.

• The mowing of dead or dried grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or equipment used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.

• Any other spark-emitting internal combustion engine-use not specifically mentioned is not allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. during high fire danger. Use of any spark-emitting internal combustion engine is allowed outside of this time frame only if the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.

• Any electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller’s instructions for fire safe operation.

For more information about the Oregon Department of Forestry’s fire season public restrictions, please call or visit the Southwest Oregon District unit office nearest to you:

• Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd., Central Point. (541) 664-3328
• Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr., Grants Pass. (541) 474-3152

Fire season information is also available online at our Facebook page: @ODFSouthwest and our website: www.swofire.com.

Press Release from ODF Southwest Oregon District