PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Here are the latest updates from the fires burning in Marion County:
Beachie Creek Fire
Containment of the Beachie Creek Fire burning in Marion County improved to 25% late Saturday, according to fire officials.
Five additional engines, another hot shot squad and crews from Canada are set to assist firefighting efforts Sunday.
Six helicopters and single engine craft assigned to the fire have been able to fly thanks to the improved visibility in the region. The forecast for Sunday and Monday calls for dryer air, warmer temperatures, and lower humidity — meaning residents may see smoldering fire, potential torching, and smoke from the interior of the fire’s footprint, according to fire officials.
“As residents of Mill City and Gates return, they should know that there are several places inside of the fire, called green islands, that did not initially burn,” officials said in a release Sunday. “The rain did not put out the fire, and it is still slowly smoldering, consuming those green islands. That activity is well inside of the fire containment lines, and first responders are aware and working the scene.”
The objective for the next 48 hours will be putting firefighters directly on the fire lines and reinforcing those containment lines, contingency lines, and monitoring any hot spots to protect Marion and Clackamas Counties — especially on the Western edge, including Greg’s Corner, Silver Falls State Park, and to the north, Corbet’s Corner.
More than 250 Canadian emergency personnel have joined the battles in the region; half have been specifically assigned to the Beachie Creek fire. Officials said the reinforcements will build fire line along State Route 22 between Stayton and Detroit.
Currently 1,118 structures are at Level 3 evacuations and another 4,574 are in level 2 evacuations in Marion County.
“As more residents are allowed back into the area, it is imperative that everyone heeds road closures and safety messages,” officials said. “Anyone who enters the fire perimeter jeopardizes firefighting operations and puts lives at risk.”
The Beachie Creek fire has torched 192,714 acres since August 16.
Much like Beachie Breek, the growth of the Lionshead Fire is anticipated to be “minimal” Sunday, according to fire officials.
Efforts to further contain the lightening-caused blaze–which has scorched 198,763 acres of land–will include work done by members of the National Guard arriving this week.
As of Sunday, the Lionshead Fire remained at 10% contained.