Southwest Oregon Spared from Flames

7-21 odfCENTRAL POINT, Ore. – As more than 600,000 acres burn across the state, Southwest Oregon crews are still ready and waiting.

Handfuls of southwest Department of Forestry firefighters have been shipping out one at a time to help with fires elsewhere. But the region has yet to see a major fire event.

That’s obviously good news here, but that does mean state resources like tankers, helicopters, and money for contract crews will be tied up if a major event does happen.

That means having to pull from places like California, Utah, or Alaska.

“It’s essentially what you have to do when you have local resources engaged in other parts of your own state,” said ODF Fire Prevention Specialist Brian Ballou. “You can’t just hook them and drag them off of that fire, you have to go find new ones.”

At this time last year we had already seen several major fires, the biggest of which being the 500-acre Pacifica fire.

The storm that caused the major complexes – like the Douglas Complex, Whiskey Complex, or Big Windy fire – was on July 26th last year.