There are hopes that cooler temperatures and calmer winds through the night will help settle down the County Line 2 wild fire burning in Warm Springs tonight. The fire is now estimated at 19,000 acres.
Highway 26 was closed across the reservation for much of the day. Highway 3 was closed late in the day due to limited visibility from smoke. Gusty, erratic winds blew the fire up on several fronts in the late afternoon resulting in level 3 notices for evacuation in the Sunnyside, Upper Dry Creek & West Hills subdivisions. Other areas were issued level 2 notices to be ready to evacuate while most everyone in the community monitored their surroundings and understood they might need to leave.
The Red Cross does have an evacuation center set up at the Warm Springs Community Center for those who need it. Public Safety Personnel, Structural and Wildland Firefighters continue to work through the night to ensure protection to life and property.
With daylight Friday (8/14), a new type 2 Incident Management Team will take control of the County Line 2 fire which has burned on Sidwalter Flat to the Mill Creek Canyon, across Miller Flat, Sunnyside and Upper Dry creek up and over Camel Back and toward the Deschutes River. The fire has also moved down Shitike Creek Canyon and toward Tenino Valley.
The wildfire started Wednesday afternoon around 1pm when an RV trailer lost a tire resulting in sparks from the wheel hitting the pavement. The sparks started a number of fires along Highway 26 on Sidwalter Flat. The Conflagration Act was invoked on Wednesday allowing Oregon’s State Fire Marshall to coordinate for structure protection from other communities around the state.
Tomorrow’s temperatures are expected to be cooler but winds are forecast to be strong. KWSO will have new information on Friday’s Morning Routine. Until then – stay safe. care for others and tell a fire fighter thank you.