SEVERE WX : Wind Advisory View Alerts

Firefighters prepared for lightning strikes

Firefighters in the Applegate Valley say they're prepared to battle fires caused by lightning strikes.

Posted: Aug 9, 2019 3:16 AM
Updated: Aug 9, 2019 2:28 PM

JACKSONVILLE, Ore. -- Crews in the Applegate Valley Fire District increase their staffing during fire season. They add even more crew members when they know lightning storms might happen. 

Each year, these firefighters train for different situations, just like the Little Applegate Complex Fire that was caused by lightning last weekend. 

"It's not uncommon that a lightning storm come through Jackson and Josephine County and starts dozens, if not a hundred or more small fires in a very short period of time," said Chris Wolfard, operations chief with the Applegate Valley Fire District.


THROWBACK: Klondike Fire the last standing of July 15 lightning-caused wildfires


That's why firefighters can get spread pretty thin when lightning strikes, Wolfard said. Firefighters also face special challenges when fighting fires caused by lightning, he added. 

Lightning normally strikes tall places, like ridges. This makes it challenging to actually get to fires caused by lightning. These fires also come with a storm. That means there's almost always a lot of wind that can spread the fire to nearby places, like a neighborhood. 

This is why firefighters said you should make sure to clear out overgrown grass and keep plants away from your house. 

"Firefighters are for emergencies," Wolfard said. "So if you can do the work ahead of time to prevent that emergency by reducing the fuels and by preventing ignitions, you won't need to call the firefighters."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 348766

Reported Deaths: 4161
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah54797689
Washington37988313
Marion36055444
Clackamas29094304
Lane26966298
Jackson22632300
Deschutes19577123
Umatilla14241144
Linn12380120
Douglas11795240
Josephine9233195
Yamhill8517110
Klamath7709110
Polk715380
Malheur551574
Benton529130
Coos489691
Columbia371343
Jefferson361450
Union313146
Lincoln310638
Wasco281540
Crook274745
Clatsop239529
Baker198028
Tillamook193328
Hood River188337
Morrow181623
Curry178122
Harney108424
Grant97612
Lake89011
Wallowa67012
Gilliam1484
Sherman1463
Wheeler991
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4810682

Reported Deaths: 70604
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles147569426398
Riverside3693444990
San Diego3641044163
San Bernardino3563155566
Orange3227415518
Sacramento1576212279
Santa Clara1445181890
Kern1441461605
Fresno1441232051
Alameda1198871374
San Joaquin1018071708
Ventura1005241164
Contra Costa99234982
Stanislaus851571315
Tulare78945951
San Francisco54031645
San Mateo53828622
Monterey50696582
Solano45761334
Santa Barbara44836521
Merced41781577
Sonoma40711402
Placer38902415
Imperial35642764
Kings32369314
San Luis Obispo29653329
Madera23518281
Butte23364260
Shasta23360334
Santa Cruz20861218
Yolo20147247
Marin17581243
El Dorado16960149
Sutter13775169
Napa12808100
Yuba994282
Tehama9298104
Humboldt9102108
Nevada903990
Mendocino752786
Lassen746346
San Benito737372
Tuolumne673993
Lake6506104
Amador537264
Siskiyou442742
Glenn430330
Calaveras381780
Del Norte356141
Colusa301718
Inyo196739
Mono16445
Plumas15756
Mariposa127315
Trinity86011
Modoc6698
Unassigned1860
Sierra1760
Alpine1020
Out of CA00
Medford
Clear
43° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 43°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
47° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 47°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
43° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 43°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
43° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 43°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 53°
Rain and mountain snow expected Sunday
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events