Firefighters slow blaze west of Lake Billy Chinook
Last updated 8/21/2023 at 7:39am
Firefighters from the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Central Oregon District, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Lake Chinook Fire & Rescue, contractors, and local partners have significantly slowed the Juniper Creek Fire through an aggressive initial attack.
Firefighters were able to establish a control line completely around the fire and will continue firefighting operations into the night. Control line is the term used to describe dozer and hand-line used create a fire break. The Juniper Creek Fire is located near the Three River area west of Lake Billy Chinook. It’s 16 miles northeast of Sisters on ODF-protected lands.
As of Monday, ODF had three aircraft, five dozers, nine engines, two tenders and around 100 personnel providing initial attack. A portion of these resources were from an ODF strike team that was prepositioned to the area to provide capacity for this purpose.
Fire operations are being managed by the Central Oregon Fire Management Service (COFMS) Type-3 Incident Management Team under Incident Commander Cason McCain.
Early on, the fire was quickly burning southeast and quickly grew to 100 acres. Active on three sides and driven by wind, the fire was running and spotting ahead of the fire. Crews initially ordered two single-engine tankers, but they were called off due to poor visibility.
Fire officials are asking the public to avoid traveling on area roads near the fire to allow for emergency responders and equipment to reach the fire. For information about evacuations, contact Sergeant David Pond at 541-475-6520 or [email protected].
The fire started sometime around 11 a.m. on Sunday, August 20. The cause is under investigation.