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Brown declares emergency over 'imminent' threat of wildfire

The move allows ODF and other state officials to utilize additional resources to respond to fires.

Posted: Aug 19, 2020 5:13 PM
Updated: Aug 19, 2020 5:13 PM

SALEM, Ore. – Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency on Wednesday due to the “imminent threat of wildfire” across Oregon.

A statement from Brown said much of the state is under extreme fire danger and red flag warnings have been put in place for hot, dry, and windy conditions and for thunderstorms.

Wildfires so far this fire season have sparked evacuations, threatened infrastructure and destroyed homes, Brown said.

With the COVID-19 pandemic, wildland firefighting operations are even more complex.

"The wildfire season has escalated in Oregon this summer, and fire crews are working in extreme temperatures to keep homes and resources safe during this pandemic," she said. "Given drought conditions and hotter than usual temperatures, Oregonians should be prepared for an intense wildfire season this summer. I'm committed to making state resources available to ensure crews have the resources they need on the ground and across the state. I urge the public to use extreme caution and be mindful of fire restrictions to protect the beauty and bounty of our state."

The emergency declaration allows the Oregon Department of Forestry and other state officials to utilize personnel, equipment and facilities from other state agencies to respond.

The Oregon National Guard will deploy firefighting resources as needed.

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