BONANZA, Ore. — Though summer storms brought high winds to northern Klamath County on Monday night, fire officials say that their crews managed to hold their existing lines around the Cutoff Fire north of Bonanza — preventing the fire from growing.
According to the Incident Management Team, firefighters battled spot fires as the winds spurred flames toward unburned and dry vegetation.
"Their hard work paid off — the fire stayed within the existing control lines with no net gain in acres burned. Today, firefighters will concentrate on strengthening fire lines and cooling hot spots," officials said.
The Cutoff Fire remains at 1,150 acres, now with containment at 12 percent.
“Yesterday and last night were pivotal to keeping this fire in its footprint. Firefighters worked hard in extremely hot weather to keep winds from spreading the fire beyond our control lines,” said Incident Commander Joe Hessel.
Evacuation levels around the fire area were lowered on Monday, allowing resident to return. But officials said that hazards remain near the fire area, including the possibility of downed powerlines, scorched trees, and stump holes. Roads in the fire's immediate area are limited to the use of emergency vehicles and residents, with deputies from the Klamath County Sheriff's Office patrolling the area.
A Level 2 "Get Set" evacuation warning remains in effect for the area east of Bly Mountain Cutoff Road, between Jaguar Lane/Racoon Lane and Spaniel Lane/Crocodile Lane, west of Thrasher Drive. Level 1 "Get Ready" evacuation notice remain in place for other areas.
Officials said that damage assessment teams will be at the fire today evaluating structural impacts. About 125 structures are still considered threatened by the Cutoff Fire, but officials have not released information about any damaged or destroyed structures.
ODF Incident Management Team 1 plans to hold a community meeting on the fire Tuesday, June 22 at 7 p.m. The public is invited to join at Bonanza Big Springs Park, 300 Main Street in Bonanza. A stream will also be available via Facebook Live.