Firefighters urge caution on Fourth of July

Lobster Creek Fire

Last year Oregon reported over 300 firework-related fires, costing almost $900,000 in property damage.

Posted: Jul 4, 2018 10:35 AM
Updated: Jul 5, 2018 9:50 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- While firefighters battle fires across the state, the Oregon Department of Forestry urges people to take extra caution this Independence Day.

Firefighters said they hope the public follows firework restrictions today. Last year Oregon reported over 300 firework-related fires, costing almost $900,000 in property damage.

The Lobster Creek Fire now has over 700 firefighters, normally a sign of a growing wildfire.

Reinforcements were brought in to eliminate any chance of the fire rekindling and escaping in the future. The objective will be to seek out and destroy any hot spots near containment lines that pose a risk of escape.

“The fire hasn’t really moved out of the perimeter in the last couple of days,” ODF Public Information Officer Marcus Kauffman said. “So we are expecting the winds to shift direction and that’ll drive the fire in a different direction and that’ll be the last test for our control lines.”

The Lobster Creek Fire is currently 15 percent contained and holding at 446 acres.

A wildfire near Warm Springs in central Oregon has now burned 900 acres. It was originally called the Cancer Fire but has been renamed the Mecca Fire.

Highway 26 is back open after the fire forced it to close.

The fire sparked Monday afternoon on the Warm Springs Reservation. Fifty homes were evacuated in the path of the fire, and the Red Cross has opened up a nearby shelter.

The cause of the Mecca Fire is under investigation.

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