The largest wildfire in Oregon has now burned more than 6,200 acres on the Warm Springs Reservation, but ground crews got plenty of help Monday from an aerial attack
The S-503 fire started Friday night southeast of Mt. Hood and spread quickly.
“We’ve got a lot of aerial support in, they are dumping retardant from heavy air tankers, we’ve got helicopters in dropping water on it,” said Javin Dimmic, Warm Springs Wildland Fire Public Information Officer. “We’ve got a single engine plane dropping water on the fire. Yesterday and throughout the weekend we got quite a few crews in. We got a lot of engine crews, bulldozers, so we have a lot of support, a lot of folks on the fire.”
Homes near Pine Grove were urged to evacuate on Saturday but those orders were reduced on Sunday.
Dimmick said the fire is currently burning in thick timber and the weather isn’t expected to offer much respite.
“High temperatures, super dry, getting into some of these drainages where we get into steeper areas,” he said. “We’ve got a brushy, grassy understory, so that feeds into the fire behavior.”
Dimmick urged people driving on Highway 26 to go safely and slowly.
“It’s going to be smoky out there, we’ve got light winds, it is going to be sticking around, there’s a lot of fire personal in between Highway 26 and Pine Grove,” he said. If you are driving through the reservation, please be considerate.”