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ROSEBURG, Ore. — More than 35 million Americans will hit the road for the upcoming holiday weekend the unofficial end to summer, but there are some restrictions in place if you plan on heading to area forests.

The continuing hot and dry conditions have caused the Douglas Forest Protection Association raised the fire danger level from high to extreme Monday.

An extreme fire danger level means that a fire, if sparked, can spread quickly. For those planning on camping in the forests this weekend, you’ll need to be prepared.

“So with fire season in Douglas County, we have a regulated use closure in affect and under that regulated use closure, there are no campfires unless it is in a designated campground approved by the DFPA,” said Kyle Reed, DFPA Fire Prevention Specialist.

For those who are hunting this weekend, you may run into restrictions.

“Other things that are restricted include exploding targets and tracer ammunition. That was a law that was passed this year by the state. It’s a statewide thing when a fire season is declared,” Reed said.

But not all land in Douglas County is at the extreme fire danger level. Lands in the Umpqua National Forest are at a high fire danger level, which means campfires are allowed.

“So if you do go camping we ask that you keep you campfires to a designated fire ring or at least in a clear spot if you’re camping in a dispersed site,” said Cheryl Caplin, Umpqua National Forest Spokesperson.

For those planning on bow hunting, the Umpqua national forest advises to stay away from a portion of its land.

“Our forest is open with the exception of a small area that is at the very north end of the Cottage Grove ranger district, about 4 miles west of Oakridge. That area is closed, so you can drive through it but you can’t get out and walk around,” Caplin said.

The closure is due to the Deception Complex Fire. So far, more than 800 acres have burned in the Willamette National Forest and as the fire grows, it’s getting closer to the Umpqua National Forest.

For more information on closures, click here or here.

jackson oisALBANY, ORE. – The westbound lanes of Highway 34 are closed near I-5.

The Jackson’s Chevron is taped off and employees have been advised to not speak to the media. ODOT says that motorists should anticipate delays and avoid the area if possible.

We have a crew on the scene and will continue to have updates on this developing story as they become available.

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Chief Meteorologist Justin Stapleton‘s Daily Forecast Discussion:  

Another sizzler today with highs in the mid 90s once again, no records set in Eugene today, but we have now had 29 days of 90+ heat, that’s two away from the record of 31 days set back in 1958. We may have a shot at breaking the all-time hottest summer on record! Tonight, very mild again with lows only falling into the upper to mid 50s. Clouds back at the coast for the morning, otherwise, clear to mostly clear inland and we’ll be off to another warm day with highs in the upper 80s to low 90s.

An update for folks living in both Oakridge and Central Oregon, winds at the surface and aloft will be NNW so the smoke from the Deception Complex will once again cause air quality issues in addition to potentially new evacuations around the perimeter of the fire lines. The latest information on the fire and associated evacuations is here: Deception Complex

Cooler air will start to head south from the Gulf as early as Thursday night, bringing down temperatures about 5-7 degrees into the low 80s by Friday. The clouds will get thicker at the coast as well. Coastal locales might be dealing with some patchy drizzle just about each day of the holiday weekend. Heading into the mountains for camping this weekend will be cloudy, cooler with highs in the upper 60s and lows falling into the upper 30s! So make sure you’ve got some layers for the chilly overnights.

Heading into the weekend for everyone, cooler Pacific air will knock everyone back inland into the 70s and a slight chance for a few isolated showers later on Saturday and again on Sunday. None of the small systems coming in this weekend look too impressive so the main areas impacted will likely be the coast and mountains. That said, Duck and Beaver home openers will both be mostly cloudy and Autzen might see the best chance for a sprinkle with a 7:30pm kickoff.

Have a great Thursday!

- Chief Meteorologist Justin Stapleton

Find me on Facebook and Twitter ! 

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OAKRIDGE, Ore. — The fires in Deception Creek have become more active and fire officials are issuing a Level 2 ‘get set’ evacuation notice for residents along LaDuke and Harbour Roads, along with the Deception Creek Mobile Park in Westfir.

Spot fires are flaring up near the mobile home park and on the Middle Fork Ranger District property.

Five helicopters are helping crews on the ground by dropping water on hotspots. The 850 acre fire is 53 percent contained.

 

Spencer's_Butte_Hiking_TrailEUGENE, Ore. — Police are warning people not to leave valuables in their cars, after an increase in break-ins at Spencer’s Butte. Eugene Police says they’ve been getting at least three calls a day from people saying they had things stolen from their car.

This all started about three weeks ago and the break-ins usually happen between dusk and 10 p.m.Police say it’s a reminder not to leave things like backpacks and purses in your car.

If you know anything about the break-ins, call police.

OAKRIDGE HAZEOAKRIDGE, Ore. — Lane County Emergency Management is opening a room in Oakridge Thursday, so people can get a break from smoke.

The air quality index has reached the “unhealthy” range for the first time this year in the Oakridge Area, because of wildfire smoke from the Deception Complex.

The Lane Regional Air Protection Agency, LRAPA, says while it’s “moderate” in the Eugene-Springfield area, it could climb to the “unsafe for sensitive groups” level.

Children, seniors and people with preexisting heart and lung conditions should stay indoors, or limit outdoor activity. Exposure to too much smoke could cause repeated coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing… Or tightness or pain in your chest.

The room to escape from the haze will be open Thursday August 28 and Friday August 27, from 8:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. It’s in the Willamette Activity Center at 47674 School Street in Oakridge.

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CRESWELL, Ore. — A Creswell homeowner doesn’t know where to turn after losing her home of 23 years to a fire.

Smoke billowed out of windows Wednesday afternoon and crews worked hard to douse the flames.

This happened around 4:30 p.m. at the corner of 2nd and A Street in Creswell.

South Lane Fire/EMS Training Division Chief Joe Raade says the fire was most intense on the second floor.

A long line of neighbors stretched down the block watching the smoke and flames.

“It was pretty intense. It was you know grey and black smoke which means it’s a structure for us. And they attacked it quite well and did a good job,” said Steve Fotta, Creswell resident.

“It was pretty sad. I mean we had — I had a house fire not long ago and so I mean it’s hard to see,” said Barbara Sears, Creswell resident.

The home owner is devastated.

She says she can’t even look at the house.

“Lots of memories. A lot of pictures. A lot of stuff getting gone. It’s not good,” said Jodi Loughary, home owner.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The homeowner wasn’t sure if her pets made it out but everyone else is okay.

Oregon State Head Coach Mike Riley:

Oregon State Wide Receivers Coach Brent Brennan:

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EUGENE, Ore. — A generous community member stepped up to help a man whose tricycle was stolen.

Evan McClendon says this isn’t just the end but a new beginning, after his tricycle was stolen over the weekend from his apartment.

On Wednesday he has a new ride thanks to a woman in Eugene.

McClendon is a 21-year-old student at the University of Oregon who suffers from a neuromuscular disorder. He says he didn’t know how he was going to get around after his trike was stolen, until community members stepped up to help.

He says when he met the donor of the tricycle, he was overjoyed.

“I definitely expressed my thanks yesterday, and I know that I’ll spend a lot of time for a very long time letting her know how thankful I am. It definitely means a lot to me,” McClendon said.

McClendon says the new one looks almost identical to his old one. He says there are some adjustments he has to make to the new tricycle, which he’ll be working on next week with his grandpa.

There’s also a bank account set up at Oregon Community Credit union to help, a small amount will go toward the trike and the rest to Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Torata TanakaEUGENE, Ore. — The Eugene Police Department is looking for a man and his four kids. He is accused of violating a custody agreement.

Police say they got the call Tuesday saying Torata Tanaka did not return his children to their mother, which violates a custody agreement between the two parents.

Police say Tanaka might be taking the two boys and two girls, who range in age from 3 to 10, to Japan.

Court documents show Tanaka and his ex-wife are both Japanese citizens who’ve lived in the U.S. for about 15 years.

Police believe Tanaka is driving a silver 2002 Acura MDX with Oregon license plate number ZEJ 686. They’re asking officers and drivers around the state to keep an eye out for the family.

“There’s no Amber Alert that’s been issued. The circumstances requiring or surrounding their not being returned don’t warrant an Amber Alert according to the Amber Alert requirements,” said Det. Jeff Roth, Eugene Police Department Violent Crimes Unit.

Court documents show the mother of the children filed the restraining order against Tanaka in 2009. It was later dismissed. She filed another one a year later, which was dismissed in 2012 before the most recent restraining order went into place.

Documents show she filed the restraining order because he was verbally and emotionally abusive to her in front of the kids.

If you see Tanaka or the children, call 9-1-1.

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