Saturday, August 22, 2015

Baker County Joint Info - Daily Update 8/22/15

Baker County, Oregon
Joint Information Center
Cornet/Windy Ridge, Eagle Complex, and Eldorado Fires
Daily Update
August 22, 2015 10 AM

Contact Information
Fire and Evacuation Information: 541-523-2905 (Monday through Friday)
Eagle Complex Fire 541-406-0201
Eldorado and Cornet-Windy Ridge Fires 541-446-3521
Inciweb:  (Cornet/Windy Ridge) (El Dorado) (Eagle Complex)
Incident Commanders:
Southwest Incident Management Team-Mark Ruggiero (Cornet/Windy Ridge)
Oregon Department of Forestry Team III-Link Smith (Eldorado)
Rocky Mountain Team Black-Shane Greer (Eagle Complex)

Fire Statistics

Total Acres:
Percent Contained:
Start Date:
Eagle Complex
August 10, 2015
August 14, 2015
Cornet/Windy Ridge
August 10, 2015

Structures Lost:
Short Location:
Eagle Complex
20 Miles northwest of Richland, Oregon
5 Miles southeast of Unity, Oregon
Cornet/Windy Ridge
10 Miles East of Unity Oregon

# Personnel:
Types of Resources:
Eagle Complex
CREWS: 10, ENGINES: 21, DOZERS: 3, TENDERS: 4, HELICOPTERS: Shared with other incidents
Cornet/Windy Ridge
CREWS: 8, ENGINES: 10, HELICOPTERS: 7 (shared with other incidents), AIR TANKERS: 0

Weather: Today’s forecast calls for warmer temperatures and lower humidity with light winds. Residents should expect to see smoke in the air.
Media Advisory: Media are requested to call the Joint Information Center number listed above.
Road Closures: Highway 245 is open. Please check www.tripcheck .com for current road-closures.
Evacuation Levels: General evacuation level information is available at: See each incident’s summary for specific evacuations around the fires.
Shelters: The Red Cross remains available to: open a shelter; provide medical attention; and assist affected Baker County citizens, if needed. For Red Cross assistance call 541-519-2360.
Oregon Health Authority – Smoke Information: The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality issued an air quality advisory for Baker and Malheur counties. This advisory will remain in effect until air quality conditions have significantly improved.  Air quality conditions outside of Baker City may vary. Residents can review the DEQ Air Quality Index website at for information about air quality and visibility. 
Weather conditions and smoke levels can vary dramatically during wildfires. Smoke might impact one part of a community but not another. This can make it difficult to provide any specific health advisories, especially as conditions change so quickly. For more air quality information visit:, or
Recreation Areas: Regulated closures are in effect on State and private lands protected by Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) in northeast and central Oregon. Please check with your local Oregon Department of Forestry office for public use restrictions on lands protected by ODF. Visit the Blue Mountain Interagency Dispatch webpage at: or contact a local Oregon Department of Forestry office for more complete information. Similar restrictions may be in effect on State and private lands protected by the Washington Department of Natural Resources (WA-DNR). More information can be found on the WA-DNR website at:
National Guard Assistance: The National Guard continues providing helicopter support to assist the area’s fire suppression efforts.

Eagle Complex

Current Situation:  Representatives from the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, the Oregon Department of Forestry and Rocky Mountain Team Black met with residents of Halfway and Richmond in two well attended meetings on Friday.  Community members were briefed on fire weather forecasts, recent fire activity and tactical plans for containment opportunities on the Eagle Complex.
The Eagle Complex is currently at 6,540 acres. High winds grounded aircraft in the afternoon, which prevented the firefighters from receiving helicopter support during the main burn period. Gusting winds increased fire behavior yesterday, and the fire pushed east into the East Eagle Creek. The Wallowa-Whitman National Forest issued an expanded area closure on Friday. The Baker County Sheriff confirmed that one structure was destroyed by the fire.
 Firefighters continued patrolling and maintaining structure protection efforts throughout the night.
Today, cooler temperatures and calmer winds will assist firefighters in continuing structure protection efforts and looking for opportunities to construct containment lines on the east side of the fire area. Engines and crews working the fire along Forest Service Roads 77 and 7755 will continue patrolling the area for “roll out,” or debris that rolls from the burn area into unburned fuels, as well as assessing opportunities to begin mopping up the fire’s edge.

Area Fire Closures: There is an expanded area closure in effect for areas near the Eagle Complex.
Please see the link to the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest Website:

Public Safety: The Baker County Sheriff's Office has issued a LEVEL 3 (Go) evacuation notice, to include the intersection of the 7700 road where it turns to the northeast at the intersection of the 7700 and 7015 roads, up the Long Creek drainage to the wilderness. The evacuation levels for the area south of the 7735 road, south of the junction of the 7735 and 7700 road to McBride Campground and over to Carson down to the forest boundary have been increased to a LEVEL 2 (Set) from a LEVEL 1 (Ready).


Current Situation: Firefighters were able to hold containment lines on the Eldorado Fire yesterday while facing strong winds with gusts in excess of 30 miles per hour. A couple of spot fires occurred on the northeast side of the fire, but crews and engines were able to respond quickly and maintain control.  The night shift continued mop up, prioritizing work in areas where there was still heat near the line.  Yesterday, much of the smoke in the area drifted in from the Canyon Creek Complex near John Day.
The weather forecast calls for mild temperatures, in the mid-70’s, and lighter winds, in the 6-11 mile per hour range on exposed ridges. However, minimum humidity will be 15-20% and the wind will be coming from the east to southeast for the first time in days.  So, different sections of the fire line could be tested. Crews will be continuing to work the areas with the most heat near the line today.  Rehabilitation work, such as removing berms, is beginning on dozer and hand lines to improve drainage and prevent erosion. The fire remains at 20,611 acres and is 55 percent contained.
Closures: No area fire closures are in place.
Public Safety: ALL Evacuation Notices will be lifted effective at noon today, August 22, 2015.
Additional Info: The fire is burning on BLM, US Forest Service, private timberland protected by ODF, and rangelands under the protection of the Ironside Rangeland Protection Association.

Cornet/Windy Ridge

Current Situation:  Firefighters will continue to mop up around the perimeter of the fire and will be removing fire weakened trees on highway 245 to provide for public safety.  Although highway 245 is open, crews will be working in the area and travelers should drive with caution or consider using an alternate route.  The interior regions of the fire, well within containment lines, will continue to burn and smoke will be visible.
Completed lines will be patrolled to prevent any remaining fire from escaping containment lines or control features.  Fire suppression activity areas are being rehabilitated to reduce soil loss and erosion.  Crews working on rehabilitation on the Cornet-Windy Ridge Fires are available for initial attack, if needed.
Area Fire Closures: A forest closure order is in place for the area around the Cornet-Windy Ridge Fires. Please see the link to the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest Website Highway 7 and 26, and Interstate 84 remain open. Highway 245 remains open. Caution should be used when traveling this route. Fire-aftermath sightseeing along this highway is strongly discouraged.
Public Safety: the public should be cautious when driving; crews and equipment are working near and along the roads, and smoke may hinder visibility. All evacuation levels are now at Level 1.

Additional Info: Communities can reduce wildfire risk or adapt to wildfire by taking actions that will protect homes, neighborhoods, and communities from wildfires. To learn what communities are doing to adapt to wildfire, visit

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