Shawn Sheldon, Incident Commander
Rail Fire Update
Friday, August 19, 2016
There will be a Community Meeting in Prairie City tonight at 6 p.m. in the Senior Center, 204 McHaley Street. The Fire Team will provide information regarding strategy and tactics with respect to suppression of the Rail Fire.
Once again the western edge of the fire was the center of activity on Thursday as spot fires continued to burn vigorously. Aircraft helped cool the spots, which are now dozer lined and secured after night shift completed the task.
Interior islands of unburned fuel will continue to burn throughout the fire area, but primary activity will be in the south. As the fire moves into the Monument Rock Wilderness Area, it is also running into the fire scar from the 2002 Monument Fire, which will help to slow its southern advance.
Meanwhile, heavy equipment will be utilized to prepare fire breaks and back-up lines around the outside of the wilderness area.
A cold front passed during the night, bringing breezier and drier but cooler weather conditions. Today, fire and smoke will be pushed by winds forecasted to be from the north to northwest at 11-17 mph with gusts to 30 mph. Temperatures will be 76-88 degrees, and relative humidity will drop to the 10% to 15% range.
The columns of smoke have been visible from many surrounding communities. For information on expected smoke conditions and suggested appropriate actions, please visit www.oregonsmoke.blogspot.com.
Fire at a Glance
Size: 29,097 acres
Location: 5 miles west of Unity, Oregon
Cause: Under Investigation
30 Water tenders
4 Type 1 heavy helicopters
1 Type 2 medium helicopter
2 Type 3 light helicopter
The fire area and multiple roads are closed. The current closure order can be found on Inciweb (see below).
(Click “Maps” for the closure map)