(Update: Oregon Dept. of Forestry reduces fire danger level)
BEND Ore. (KTVZ) -- With increasingly cooler weather and various levels of precipitation across Central Oregon, the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests, Crooked River National Grassland and the Prineville District Bureau of Land Management will drop public use (fire) restrictions, effective at 12:01 a.m. Saturday.
Additionally, the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) that pertains to permitted activities like firewood cutting, has lowered to Level I.
With this action, campfires are now allowed outside of designated, developed campgrounds across public land. The public is reminded to use existing fire rings for campfires wherever possible and to always bring a shovel and extra water to ensure the fire is cold to the touch when you leave.
The exception to this is the annual river corridor restrictions which remain in place through October 15. Campfires, charcoal fires, wood pellet burning devices, and portable propane campfire devices are still prohibited on BLM-administered lands along portions of the Crooked, Deschutes, John Day, and White Rivers, as well as along Lake Billy Chinook and Lake Simtustus.
With a return to IFPL I, firewood cutters are now allowed to cut firewood at any time of the day. Please ensure that spark arrestors are in good working order and you carry a shovel and water for use if you inadvertently spark a fire. Information on current restrictions or the current Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) can be obtained by contacting your Central Oregon Fire Use Information Line at 1-800-523-4737.
For current wildland fire information, the public can visit centraloregonfire.org or follow fire information on Twitter @CentralORfire. Call 9-1-1 to report a wildfire.
Central Oregon District moves down to Moderate Fire Danger
Oregon Dept. of Forestry - 09/22/23 3:30 PM
Prineville, Ore. – Starting Friday (September 22) at 12:01 a.m., the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Central Oregon District moved down to a “Moderate” fire danger level and additional restrictions under Regulated Use Closure were terminated for all lands protected by the district.
In addition, the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) changed to I (one) for MH-4 in Hood River County (west of Hwy 35) and for MH-1 (east of Hwy 35 in Hood River and Wasco counties).
While conditions have dropped to Moderate fire danger, backyard debris burning continues to be prohibited on ODF-protected lands within the Central Oregon District.
Under IFPL I (one), on ODF protected lands in Hood River and Wasco counties, the use of fire or power-driven machinery in any operation area is unlawful, unless such use is following fire prevention requirements.
In addition, the fire watch requirement for this level is reduced from a minimum of three hours to a minimum of one hour during breaks and at the end of the operation period.
Although there is rain in the forecast, Central Oregon District remains in fire season. As such, they encourage the public to be mindful of activities that could cause a wildfire, as conditions can vary across the district.
Additional fire restrictions or regulations may apply, depending on the various fire risks. Check the full list of restrictions at https://www.oregon.gov/odf/fire/pages/restrictions.aspx.