LAKEVIEW, Ore. – Wildland firefighters for the South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership (SCOFMP) have been responding to new fire starts today from the current lightning activity while work continues on the Pool Fire.
The current lightning event started at 4 p.m. yesterday, with numerous lightning strikes throughout South Central Oregon, mostly east of U.S. Highway 97. There has been rain reported with many of the storms.
Firefighters have responded to 28 potential incidents. Of those, 18 were confirmed lightning fires. Three of those fires were confirmed yesterday, the remaining 15 today.
These incidents are scattered across the landscape and are on lands under the protection of ODF or the federal agencies in the SCOFMP area. The largest of these fires was three-tenths of an acre.
Detection flights are being conducted in the area to look for smoke from lightning fires. These resources are being shared to increase capacity throughout Southern Oregon.
As conditions dry out in coming days, it is expected more lightning fires will be discovered. SCOFMP wildland firefighting resources are prepared to respond.
The public is asked to call 911 to report suspected wildfires.
The Pool Fire, located on Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) protected lands east of Agency Lake, south of Chiloquin, is 90 percent mopped up and fire managers report it is looking good. The fire was reported yesterday afternoon and is 22 acres.
A Red Flag Warning remains in effect in the SCOFMP area through midnight tonight for abundant lightning on dry fuels. Gusty and erratic winds could spread fire quickly.
Despite recent rains, fuels are extremely dry and temperatures are forecasted to raise into 90s and 100s by the weekend over much of the area. Conditions are unusually hot and dry for this area for late June. The public is asked to use extreme care with anything that can spark a wildfire.
Regulated Use Restrictions are in effect on ODF protected lands and the fire danger level remains High. It is important to be aware of current fire restrictions. Visit http://www.scofmp.org to check the latest regulations.
Anyone going out into wildlands should be prepared with water, a shovel, fire extinguisher and axe. Campfires should never be left unattended and should be dead out and cold to the touch before leaving.