Forest Rangers Anticipate Active Fire Season
Officials are expecting an active fire season in western Oregon this summer and they want people to practice fire safety.
Last summer, the Terwilliger fire was sparked after someone left a cigarette on a tree stump. It ended up burning almost 12,000 acres of the Willamette National Forest and closed the Terwilliger Hot Springs for nearly a year.
Darren Cross, district ranger at the Willamette National Forest, says changing weather has made for dryer forests. Thus, wild fires burn hotter and spread faster than they would have in years past. He says it’s important for the public to keep fire safety in mind.
“Really the key is for people to just be careful when they’re using the forest, especially with the fourth of July coming up,” says Cross. “No fireworks on federal land, no fireworks in the forest for sure. That’s a definite no-no and we want to prevent these wildfires from happening again.”
Cross also asks people be mindful parking their cars off-road, with cigarettes, campfires, and anything else that may start a fire.