Fire chief reminds about burn pile safety as weather warms, dries
La PINE, Ore. (KTVZ) – A reignited burn pile spread and sparked a quarter-acre brush fire in La Pine Tuesday afternoon, threatening a home and a tied-up dog for a time, but crews stopped the fire before any damage or injuries.
La Pine Rural Fire District firefighters responded shortly after 3 p.m. to the reported brush fire in the 16500 block of Reed Road, after an Oregon State Police trooper spotted the flames near an unoccupied home, Fire Chief Mike Supkis said.
Eight firefighters on a brush engine, water tender and quick response unit command vehicle responded and quickly contained the fire, which had threatened a home, camper and dog run.
Supkis said law enforcement and firefighters first made sure a tied-up dog, who was exposed to the spreading fire and could not escape, was safe.
The cause was an escaped fire from a burn pile where debris previously was burned and wet debris and pine needles were later placed on top, Supkis said. With the arrival of dryer, warmer weather, the new material ignited, and the fire escaped to the surrounding grass and brush.
The fire district wants to keep our community safe from fire, and as a reminder, all debris burning on private lands must have a permit, (and) those permit conditions must be followed, including having a working hose or water extinguishers and be attended at all times," Supkis said in a news relesae.
"Even after a few cool and wet spring days, it only takes one day of sunny and warm temperatures, with a bit of light wind -- typical afternoon weather in Central Oregon -- causing increased fire behavior in light fuels," the fire chief warned.