Holiday Farm containment reaches 14%; most evac levels downgraded


More than 173k acres burned

Fire fighters take a break in a parking lot as they try to contain the Holiday Farm fire in McKenzie Bridge, Oregon on September 10, 2020. – California firefighters battled the state’s largest ever inferno on September 10, as tens of thousands of people fled blazes up and down the US West Coast and officials warned the death toll could shoot up in coming days. At least eight people have been confirmed dead in the past 24 hours across California, Oregon and Washington, but officials say some areas are still impossible to reach, meaning the number is likely to rise. (Photo by Tyee Burwell / AFP) (Photo by TYEE BURWELL/AFP via Getty Images)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The Lane County Sheriff’s Office lowered the evacuation notices for a few areas that had been involved in the Holiday Farm Fire.

Highway 126 from Camp Creek Road to McKenzie Ranger Station was downgraded from Level 3 to Level 2 Sunday. The move includes including connecting roads in the area.

Additionally, the Level 2 notice for Highway 126 east of the McKenzie River Ranger Station to the junction of Highway 126 and Highway 20 (Santiam Junction) was downgraded to Level 1.

Although evacuation levels were lowered, the Oregon Department of Transportation has kept Highway 126 closed between Leaburg Dam Road at milepost 23.9 and the west entrance of McKenzie River Drive at milepost 46.3 for safety, response, and repair work.

“Fire crews continue to make excellent progress around the 260-mile perimeter of
the fire,” fire officials said in a release Sunday afternoon. “Heavy mop-op operations are underway in several throughout the fire. While the terrain, combined with the recent thunderstorm showers, has posed challenges for fire crews to gain direct access to the fire’s edge, they are taking
advantage of the cooler weather to tighten up fire lines and keep the main fire from spreading much further.”

Firefighters’ primary focus on Sunday will be near and aroun HJ Andrews Experimental Forest, just outside the northeast corner of the fire’s edge.

People who plan to return to reopened areas are asked to avoid barricaded locations for their own safety, LCSO officials said. Fire-damaged structures can be extremely hazardous and residents are encouraged to have professionals assess and deal with damaged areas once those areas open for return. Serious hazards can include unstable and falling debris, toxic substance exposure including asbestos and eye/lung/skin impact from ash and other irritants.

The Holiday Farm Fire’s footprint is currently estimated at 173,025 acres and containment is at 14%. The fire’s perimeter measures more than 260 miles.

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