Warning Alert

Emergency crews responding to several large wildfires in Oregon, US, as of Sept. 23. Evacuations, transport disruptions ongoing.

Alert Begins 23 Sep 2020 08:11 PM UTC
Alert Expires 30 Sep 2020 11:59 PM UTC

 

  • Incident: Multiple wildfires
  • Location(s): Oregon (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Evacuations, ground transport disruptions; possible power outages

 

Summary
Emergency crews continue working to contain several wildfires burning in different parts of Oregon as of Sept. 23. Oregon Governor Kate Brown has issued a statewide state of emergency due to further threat of wildfires. Several counties, including Marion and Clackamas, have declared their own local states of emergency. At least 40,000 residents across Oregon were forced to evacuate; however, many evacuation orders have since been lifted. Authorities have not provided an estimated containment time frame. Firefighters have made significant progress in containing the fires. Forecast models indicate additional rounds of rain and thunderstorms will impact much of western Oregon through at least Sept. 26, which should further aid in the relief efforts and reduce air quality concerns.

Currently, many fires are burning across Oregon, but the most impactful are Archie Creek, Beachie Creek, Holiday Farm, Lionshead, Riverside, South Obenchain, and Slater-Devil. These fires have prompted numerous evacuation orders across the state.

Additionally, authorities have closed Mount Hood National Forest to the public until further notice. Authorities could expand or rescind mandatory evacuation orders depending on evolving wildfire conditions.

Archie Creek
The Archie Creek Fire is burning in the North Umpqua corridor and is approximately 34 km (21 miles) east of Roseburg. The fire is 53,255 hectares (131,598 acres) and is 52-percent contained as of midday Sept. 23. At least 1,097 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Beachie Creek
The Beachie Creek Fire is burning in the Opal Creek Wilderness and is approximately 24 km (15 miles) east of Salem. The fire is 78,034 hectares (192,828 acres) and is 46-percent contained, as of midday Sept. 23. At least 800 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Currently, 1,118 structures under Level 3 mandatory evacuation orders and 4,574 are at level 2 evacuation warnings. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Holiday Farm
The Holiday Farm Fire is burning in the Willamette National Forest and is approximately 29 km (18 miles) east of Eugene. The fire is 70,048 hectares (173,094 acres) and is 27-percent contained, as of midday Sept. 23. At least 1,057 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Lionshead
The Lionshead Fire is burning in the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Reservation and is approximately 73 km (45 miles) east of Salem. The fire is 82,428 hectares (203,685 acres) and is 15-percent contained, as of midday Sept. 23. At least 1,425 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Riverside
The Riverside Fire is burning in Clackamas County approximately 43 km (27 miles) southeast of Portland. The fire is 55,857 hectares (138,027 acres) and is 31-percent contained, as of midday Sept. 23. At least 671 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

South Obenchain
The South Obenchain Fire is burning in Jackson County approximately 21 km (14 miles) north-northeast of Portland. The fire is 13,221 hectares (32,671 acres) and is 80-percent contained, as of midday Sept. 23. At least 856 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Communities surrounding the fire have been downgraded to Level 2 evacuation warnings. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Slater/Devil
The Slater/Devil fires are burning approximately 65 km (40 miles) southwest of Medford, along the California-Oregon border. The fires are a combined 60,795 hectares (150,230 acres) and are 24-percent contained, as of Sept. 23. At least 1,135 personnel are currently on-site battling the blaze. Click here for details concerning ongoing evacuation orders and transport disruptions.

Transport
Depending on the progression of the wildfires, the status of nearby roads could change over the coming hours and days; authorities could close additional routes near the wildfires and evacuate more communities due to fire activity and the needs of response operators. Traffic flows could also be disrupted during re-entry periods after authorities lift evacuation orders. Low visibility from smoke and possible ashfall could contribute to traffic delays and congestion in the region.

Health
Individuals not under evacuation warnings should consider remaining inside well-ventilated, air-conditioned spaces to reduce exposure to smoke. Individuals with chronic respiratory illnesses may be more susceptible to the negative effects of smoke inhalation. Eye irritation is possible; flush irritated eyes with copious amounts of clean water.

 

Advice
Heed all evacuation orders. Seek updated information on road conditions if driving in the affected area; road closures and detours will cause increased congestion and delays. Individuals not under evacuation warnings should consider remaining inside well-ventilated, air-conditioned spaces to reduce exposure to smoke. Collect essential items - including identification and any important legal and travel documents - in a "go-bag" that can be easily accessed. Charge battery-powered devices in the case of prolonged power outages.
 

 

Back to the 2020 Wildfires Risk Intelligence and Resource Center