Information regarding current wildfire activity in the Blue Mountain area of Northeast Oregon and Southeast Washington. Hosted by Blue Mountain Interagency Dispatch Center, Oregon Department of Forestry's Northeast Oregon District, Umatilla National Forest, and Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.
Saturday, July 30, 2016
Conditions Have Dried Out Considerably as Firefighters Battle Weigh Station Fire along I-84
July 30, 2016
For IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jamie Knight (541) 786-2039
Pendleton, OR- An aggressively burning
wildfire is threatening homes and has had Interstate 84 closed for several
hours in Northeast Oregon. Level 3
evacuations have been issued both North and South of the interstate for homes
near Deadman Pass. The Weigh Station fire
has burned over 700 acres as of 8:00 p.m. and is 0% contained. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Gusty winds and dry fuel conditions are
helping to drive the fire. The fire
behavior has moderated some with sunset, but the fire is still burning actively
in timber and grass. The fire made
aggressive runs and displayed group torching in timber stands of Ponderosa pine
As the fire is burning actively near I-84,
the freeway is closed both east bound and west bound. Oregon Department of Transportation reports
that the freeway is closed eastbound at Exit 216 in Pendleton. The freeway is also closed westbound to all
traffic at Exit 302 in Baker City.
Passenger cars are being permitted to travel westbound between Ontario
and Baker City. For up to date
information concerning closures, please check www.tripcheck.com.
Local resources on the fire include nine
Single Engine Air Tankers (SEATs), one heavy air tanker, two helicopters, one
air attack, one lead plane, three dozers, more than 12 engines, one hot shot
crew, and various overhead personnel.
Firefighters from Umatilla County, Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla
Indian Reservation (CTUIR), Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), United States
Forest Service (USFS) and Oregon Department of forestry are battling the blaze. The fire is burning on lands protected by and
is being managed by the Oregon Department of Forestry.
Objectives for tonight including completing
containment lines and strengthening lines by firing along them. The Blue Mountain Type 3 Interagency Incident
Management Team is taking command of the fire tomorrow morning.
The near-term weather report calls for warm
temperatures and a chance of thunderstorms.
The public is reminded that ODF is currently in Regulated Use Closure in
Northeast Oregon. Fire managers
recommend that recreationists and travelers check the fire regulations before
heading out to enjoy the forest.