Text Size:   A+ A- A   •   Text Only
Site Image
South Cascade District raises fire precaution levels
Contact: Lena Tucker, 541-401-0310
The Oregon Department of Forestry’s South Cascade District announced today that it is tightening fire safety restrictions for timber harvest operations as well as recreational activity.
The long-lasting heat wave has prompted the district to raise the fire safety precaution levels across eastern Lane and Linn Counties. Beginning July 29, most timber harvest activity on the 1.3 million acres protected from wildfire by the district will be restricted to the period from 8 p.m. to 1 p.m. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) for all regulated-use zones in the district has been raised to 3.
Under IFPL 3, use of chainsaws and heavy equipment is severely limited, and firefighting equipment must be on site at all times, with a fire watch posted after an operation shuts down for the day.
On Friday, July 31, public-use restrictions will go into effect on private and public lands protected by ODF in Regulated-Use zones WL-1, WL-2, and WL-3, which encompass the higher elevations in eastern Lane and Linn counties. These restrictions limit campfires, off-road vehicle use, and chainsaw use, among other activities.
“Our immediate concern is the rapid increase of the ignition component ratings, which is a measure of the probability of fire starts,” South Cascade District Forester Lena Tucker said. “It can best be described as someone throwing out 100 lit matches and seeing how many of them start a fire once they hit the ground. Currently, 46 of those matches would start a fire.” 
Tucker urged Oregonians to be careful while recreating in the mountains as they try to escape the valley heat.
A map of the regulated use zones and current restrictions can be viewed on the Department of Forestry Website, www.oregon.gov/ODF/FIRE/precautionlevel.shtml. Click on the heading, “South Cascade.”