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Gov. Brown declares blanket state of emergency for wildfire risk in Oregon

Brown's office cited a handful of sizable wildfires this season that have caused evacuations, threatened infrastructure, and destroyed homes and other structures.

Posted: Aug 19, 2020 4:36 PM
Updated: Aug 19, 2020 4:43 PM

SALEM, Ore. — Governor Kate Brown on Wednesday declared a state of emergency in Oregon prompted by the growing threat of wildfire, as many counties experience "Extreme" fire danger and intermittant Red Flag warnings for hot, dry and windy conditions and a series of dry thunderstorm.

Brown's office cited a handful of sizable wildfires this season that have caused evacuations, threatened infrastructure, and destroyed homes and other structures — much of which can be attributed to the recent Mosier Fire in the Columbia River Basin.

"The wildfire season has escalated in Oregon this summer, and fire crews are working in extreme temperatures to keep homes and resources safe during this pandemic," Brown said. "Given drought conditions and hotter than usual temperatures, Oregonians should be prepared for an intense wildfire season this summer. I'm committed to making state resources available to ensure crews have the resources they need on the ground and across the state. I urge the public to use extreme caution and be mindful of fire restrictions to protect the beauty and bounty of our state."

Oregon law provides for an emergency declaration when "a threat to life, safety, and property exists" due to the threat of wildfire. The result is largely administrative — making it easier for the Oregon Department of Forestry, the state Fire Marshal's office, and the Oreogn Office of Emergency Management to share personnel, equipment, and other resources during response to wildfires.

"The Oregon National Guard will deploy firefighting resources as needed and in accordance with Operations Agreement Smokey 2020 throughout the remainder of the fire season based upon threat and resource shortfalls," Brown's office said. "The Oregon Health Authority will continue to provide guidance and assist with mitigating the spread of COVID-19 at wildland fire facilities and camps, emergency shelters, and evacuation centers."

While fire crews in Oregon have so far kept fires thus far from causing major destruction, California has been beset by a flurry of lightning-sparked fires this week that have destroyed an untold number of homes.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 357526

Reported Deaths: 4284
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah55810707
Washington38782324
Marion36837455
Clackamas29779309
Lane27744302
Jackson23059310
Deschutes20336125
Umatilla14492150
Linn12911131
Douglas12118243
Josephine9384196
Yamhill8715113
Klamath8020119
Polk737381
Malheur563677
Benton549431
Coos503794
Columbia382644
Jefferson376052
Lincoln319939
Union319549
Crook291846
Wasco288841
Clatsop244328
Baker203529
Tillamook196932
Hood River192837
Morrow185023
Curry180625
Harney113927
Grant100013
Lake93912
Wallowa68612
Gilliam1544
Sherman1523
Wheeler1121
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4850807

Reported Deaths: 71341
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles148419226540
Riverside3716705041
San Diego3673614183
San Bernardino3586775692
Orange3242885562
Sacramento1596362309
Kern1463481648
Fresno1463182094
Santa Clara1455431897
Alameda1206921400
San Joaquin1027761721
Ventura1010381167
Contra Costa1000181008
Stanislaus862991335
Tulare80375978
San Francisco54440649
San Mateo54168623
Monterey50911586
Solano46063341
Santa Barbara45223523
Merced42422581
Sonoma40997404
Placer39435429
Imperial36071766
Kings32938325
San Luis Obispo29973333
Madera23955285
Shasta23924352
Butte23818273
Santa Cruz21034221
Yolo20397248
Marin17706244
El Dorado17207149
Sutter13937175
Napa12898100
Yuba1011582
Tehama9534110
Humboldt9269109
Nevada916790
Mendocino766787
Lassen754347
San Benito744972
Tuolumne691790
Lake6631105
Amador547364
Siskiyou451246
Glenn438433
Calaveras391481
Del Norte358742
Colusa307618
Inyo214241
Mono16723
Plumas16607
Mariposa133916
Trinity88011
Modoc6895
Sierra1880
Unassigned1460
Alpine1050
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