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Disasters & Accidents

Smoke Affects Firefighting Efforts In Southwest Oregon

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The South Umpqua complex of fires in southwest Oregon has grown to nearly 5,000 and is just 10 percent contained.

Wayne Patterson is a Public Information Officer with the Umpqua Complex of 6 fires. He says the most active is the Snowshoe fire burning on the border between Douglas and Jackson County. The Jackson County Sheriff has put some residents on a level 2 evacuation notice. Patterson says winds have caused the valley to fill with smoke.

 “Smoke keeps the relative humidities higher and keeps the temperature down so it helps us from that perspective to where firefighters on the ground can go ahead and get in places where they might have a hard time getting close to when things are hotter. The bad news is we can’t get any air support because the helicopters and the airplanes can’t go ahead and see through the smoke.”

Winds are expected to push the smoke south out of the Umpqua valley this evening [Monday] and into Medford and Grants Pass.
A community meeting will be held at the Tiller Fire Department tonight [Monday] at 6:30.
 

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