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Wildfire near Mapleton grows to 400 acres, prompts evacuations

Sweet Creek Milepost 2 Fire 831
Oregon Dept. of Forestry
Smoke rises Sunday from the Sweet Creek Milepost 2 Fire, three blazes that merged into one.

MAPLETON, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Firefighters were continuing their fight Monday to slow the spread of a 400-acre wildfire on private forestland about a mile southeast of Mapleton in western Lane County that prompted evacuation of several nearby homes.

The fire, reported Sunday, was burning in steep terrain on the south side of the Siuslaw River and is burning toward the south away from Mapleton, officials said. 

Fire crews aided by six bulldozers, five water tenders, an excavator and a processor were reinforcing control lines Monday morning that they dug Sunday, officials said.

They also added water hoses to the fire lines and worked to extend those lines. However, the fire is still officially 0% contained.

Meanwhile, two helicopters are taking water from the Siuslaw River to drop on the fire.

ODF fire officials are asking the pubic to avoid the area downstream from Mapleton in the Hadsall Creek Road section of the Siuslaw River where the helicopters are refilling their buckets.

Fire officials are also asking the public to avoid the Hadsall Creek Road and Sweet Creek Road areas because of heavy firefighting traffic. 

The Lane County Sheriff's Office has eight homes under a Level 3 (Go Now) evacuation order and 24 homes under a Level 2 (Get Set) evacuation order.

A number of local firefighting agencies have been assisting on the fire, including :

  • Mapleton Fire Department
  • Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue (Florence)
  • Swisshome-Deadwood Rural Fire Protection District

Other agencies aiding on the fire include the Lance County Emergency Management, Lane County Road Department, Lane County Sheriff's Office, Oregon Department of Transportation and the U.S. Forest Service.

ODF Incident Management Team One led by Joe Hessel will take command of the fire at 6 p.m. Monday, freeing up local resources to focus again on initial attack on any new fires in coming days.

Article Topic Follows: Fire Alert

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