Fires Keep Rogue Valley Crews Busy

grass firesMEDFORD, Ore. – Firefighters say as temperatures heat up, it’s combining with wind to help dry out fire fuels, and allow fires to burn faster.

Fire crews across Southern Oregon responded to several grass fires and house fires in just the past day. Monday afternoon, Medford firefighters responded to Clark and Cedar Streets around 2 p.m. to a fire near the railroad tracks.

The fire burned a 200 foot path of dry grass near several buildings, but crews were able to shortly get it under control and prevent it from damaging any structures. Firefighters say transients were seen in the area shortly before the fire started, but right now the cause of the fire is unknown. They are urging landowners to keep their dry grass short and reduce fire danger.

“There’s small, light flashy fuels, and with this breeze today and temperatures in the double to triple digits,  fires spread quite  rapidly,” said Medford Fire Captain Erin Sawall.

A house fire in Jacksonville destroyed a home early Tuesday morning, and crews still do not know what started it. They said it spread to nearby trees and into the attic of a neighboring house, where it caused smoke damage.

The Oregon Department of Forestry also put out a small grass fire outside Jacksonville Tuesday afternoon. A grass fire in Ashland on Monday night burned a little more than an acre in a field near the railroad tracks on A Street.