News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Small fires a warning to Sisters

Recent incidents remind Sisters residents and visitors that fire is an ever-present danger.

A fire broke out in the woods about five miles west of Sisters, about a quarter-mile northwest of Zimmerman Butte on Sunday. Firefighters from the Forest Service and Sisters-Camp Sherman Fire District (SCSFD) responded quickly and kept it confined to 6/10 of an acre. Fire officials report that the fire was human-caused, but have not determined specifically what sparked the blaze.

On Wednesday, June 2, U.S. Forest Service firefighters knocked down the blaze that started from an unattended and escaped campfire about three miles west of Sisters off Highway 20. The fire was about 1.2 acres in size.

The previous week, on May 28, a trailer burned to the ground on the outskirts of town near the north end of Pine Street, with the fire spreading to adjacent trees and brush.

Crews arrived to find a small travel trailer fully involved, and mostly consumed by fire. The fire had extended to nearby trees and brush. The first engine crew to arrive on the scene was able to suppress the fire and keep it from extending any further.

According to SCSFD, an interview with the owner of the trailer indicated that the most likely cause of the fire was an unattended propane-fired heating unit that was left too close to combustibles inside the trailer.

“Never leave portable heating devices unattended, as they pose an increased risk of fire,” said Deputy Chief Tim Craig.

Drought conditions have made for an early and menacing fire season in Sisters Country. Extreme care should be exercised when camping or recreating in the woods around Sisters.


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