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Central Oregon fire officials urge caution this weekend amid red flag warning, critical fire conditions

NWS-Pendleton

REDMOND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Central Oregon is under a Red Flag Warning for gusty northeast winds from 10 to 20 mph, gusting up to 30 mph and low relative humidity values in the low teens from noon Friday through 11:00 p.m. Saturday. 

These critical fire weather conditions, along with temperatures predicted to be in the low 90s this weekend, can lead to extreme fire behavior and significant fire growth on existing large fires like the Cedar Creek, as well as increased smoke in our area, Central Oregon fire officials said in a news release Friday, which continues below:

Evacuation levels can expand quickly in extreme fire conditions and are coordinated through county sheriff’s offices. All three Central Oregon counties have registration systems for emergency notices via text message in each county. Consider signing up for these notices in your area. 

·       Deschutes County: https://www.deschutes.org/911/page/sign-deschutes-alerts

·       Jefferson County: https://www.jeffco.net/sheriff/page/citizen-emergency-notification-system

·       Crook County: http://www.alertcrookcounty.org/

Smoke may impact large portions of Oregon and Washington, including population centers and areas that have not had smoke impacts yet this summer. For more information on smoke and how to keep your family safe, visit:  https://www.oregonsmoke.org/

In critical conditions like these, fire prevention is more important than ever. If you have a fire in a designated campground this weekend, ensure that you keep flame lengths low and manageable and that you clear any combustible material at least 15 feet from the campfire ring.

Visitors should always make sure that campfires are “dead out” or cold to the touch when left. Be responsible with all ignition sources—ensure spark arrestors are in good working order if you’re operating a chainsaw or off-road vehicle and protect trailer chains so they don’t drag on the road. Do your part to prevent one more spark.                        

Article Topic Follows: Central Oregon

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