News, Tillamook State Forest, wildfire

Fire danger to rise to ‘moderate’ July 4 as region prepares for heat wave

Just two days after fire season began in lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry in the Northwest Oregon Forest Protective Association (NWOFPA), fire danger will be set to “moderate” or blue at 1 a.m. July 4 as the region braces for a four-day heat wave expected to hit beginning Independence Day.

In an email notifying forest operators of the change to public use restrictions (IFPL levels remain at 1), Oregon Department of Forestry Tillamook District Forester Kate Skinner cited the heat wave as the reason for the rise in fire danger.

“We will reevaluate weather conditions and forecast on Monday for any IFPL or Public Use Restriction changes,” Skinner said.

The NWOFPA region includes much of the regions of Gales Creek, Buxton, Timber, Manning, and the Tillamook State Forest, among other areas. It stretches north to the Columbia River, west to the Pacific Ocean, south to Sheridan, and east to parts of Gales Creek, the Killin Wetlands outside of Banks and to Scappoose.

The public and industrial users of local forests can stay informed of current fire restrictions by visiting the agency’s Fire Restrictions & Closures website or calling their local ODF or protective association office, in this case, Forest Grove ODF offices for most of our readers at 503-357-2191.

Chas Hundley is the editor of the Banks Post and sister news publications the Gales Creek Journal and the Salmonberry Magazine. He grew up in Gales Creek and has a cat.

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