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ODF Lookouts Keep Close Eye on Storms

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JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. — When thunderstorms move into the area as they did on Tuesday afternoon, Fire Officials with the Oregon Department of Forestry are prepared to use all resources they have available.

Lookout points are often perched on mountain tops, and the staff use their unique perspective to track storms, lightning strikes, and fires that can result from thunderstorms.

Laura Glasscock spends 24 hours a day in the Soda Mountain lookout, and keeps a close eye on each storm system that moves into the area.

“So we watch that process going on. We watch for the dark bases, and the height of the column. We watch for what direction it is going,” said Glasscock.

The Oregon Department of Forestry staffs the lookouts with the help of 30 employees each summer.