Bureau of Land Management Ore. & Wash.
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News Releases
Bureau of Land Management issues emergency fire closure for Salt Creek Fire - 07/11/24

Medford, Oregon – As a result of the Salt Creek Fire, the Bureau of Land Management Butte Falls Field Office has temporarily closed BLM-managed lands in the area for public and firefighter safety. Members of the public may not enter closed areas, and all uses—including hiking, hunting and dispersed camping—are prohibited. 

The closure order encompasses the BLM lands within the affected evacuation zones. This includes BLM lands south of Butte Falls Highway, north of Highway 140, and east of Salt Creek Road to the USFS boundary. Please see the map for full closure information on the BLM website: https://www.blm.gov/orwafire 

Public and firefighter safety are the highest priority. The closure will allow fire suppression crews to continue to safely respond to the incident. As it becomes safe to do so, firefighters will begin to assess the closure and their impacts in alignment with sound risk management practices.

For the latest road and weather condition updates, visit https://www.tripcheck.com/. BLM Medford District has additional fire closures and fire restriction information available on BLM.GOV.

Please call 911 to report any signs of new fires. 

-BLM-

 

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. 

 

Attached Media Files: Closure order and map
Bureau of Land Management issues fire restrictions for Northwest Oregon District - 07/08/24

Salem, OR. – On July 8th, fire restrictions will go into effect for all Bureau of Land Management public lands throughout the Northwest Oregon District. BLM leaders encourage all visitors to be aware of active restrictions and closures as warmer, drier weather sets in around the Pacific Northwest.

These fire restrictions help reduce the risk of human-caused fires. The BLM Oregon/Washington statewide Fire Restrictions went into effect May 24th, prohibiting fireworks, exploding targets or metallic targets, steel component ammunition (core or jacket), tracer or incendiary devices, and sky lanterns.

To further reduce wildfire risk, the following is prohibited: fires and campfires except in designed areas, smoking in vegetated areas, vehicle use in unmanaged vegetated areas, operating a chainsaw, welding or using a torch, or using an internal combustion engine without a spark arrestor.  

This prohibition will become effective at 12:01 a.m. PDT on the 8th day of July 2024 and will remain in effect until rescinded.

Those who violate the prohibition may be fined up to $100,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 12 months. In addition, those found responsible for starting wildland fires on federal lands can be billed for the cost of fire suppression.

For the complete order and more information on seasonal fire restrictions and fire closures, please see www.blm.gov/orwafire.

To learn more about fire careers with BLM Oregon-Washington, please see https://www.blm.gov/programs/public-safety-and-fire/fire/state-info/oregon-washington/careers.

 

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

 

 

Attached Media Files: Fire Order
Fishermen's Bend Recreation Site to temporarily close - 07/03/24

Mill City, Ore. — The Bureau of Land Management will temporarily close Fishermen's Bend Recreation Site, located in Mill City, Oregon, for hazard tree removal from July 8–10, 2024.

The entirety of the popular recreation site will be closed. The work will pave the way for the Bureau of Land Management to rebuild the site, which was affected by wildfire in 2020.

“We are removing dead and dying trees that the shallow soils in Fishermen’s Bend can no longer support,” said Lauren Woras, BLM Outdoor Recreation Planner. “It is essential to remove all hazards, including trees, prior to the major construction we are planning for site rebuild. Leaving trees that have more potential to fail is unsafe for the public and could be damaging to the new construction.”

According to Woras, new construction is not the only goal of the hazard tree removal. 

“Recently, drier soils have made it more difficult for the trees to survive and more are dying each year,” she said. “The trees have become more susceptible to weather conditions such as freezing or wind break.”

Hazard tree removal will make way for new species more suited for the environment to regenerate within the area.

The Bureau of Land Management asks the public to stay away from the area while crews perform their work due to the danger posed by falling trees. The site will reopen during clean-up. During this time, Woras asks the public to be mindful and stay away from heavy machinery while recreating in the park.

Surrounded by the tranquility of the North Santiam River, Fishermen’s Bend is a family-friendly park. Please remember to follow BLM Oregon/Washington fire restrictions, particularly during the summer months. To learn more about the recreation site, visit the Bureau of Land Management’s website.

 

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Bureau of Land Management treatments prevent wildfire from spreading to Oregon town - 07/02/24

Prineville, Ore. — Last week, wildfire broke out on public lands near the community of La Pine, Oregon. Fortunately, decades of land treatments performed by the Bureau of Land Management helped stop the fire in its tracks.

The Darlene 3 Fire began the afternoon of Tuesday, June 25, in Deschutes County. By Thursday, it had grown to over 3,000 acres.

The west flank of the fire headed towards the city of La Pine, home to over 2,000 people and located just 30 miles southwest of Bend. Decades of extensive fuel treatments in the area performed by the BLM Prineville District Division of Fire and Aviation Management and partners, as well as a rapid response from local fire teams, prevented the fire from reaching the town.

“This outcome was the result of a series of fuel treatments, not just one,” said James Osborne, BLM Prineville District Fire Management Officer. “Extensive fuel treatments around the city of La Pine done over numerous years have been highly effective in stopping previous fires as well as this one. We continue to see that benefit.”

“The Bureau of Land Management has been doing work in this area since the eighties, since before they were called fuels treatments,” said Rob Fore, BLM Prineville District Fuels Program Manager. “But in recent years, we have been more strategic. We are intentional with the kind of fuels treatments we choose and where we line them up on the landscape.”

These intentional treatments include hand thinning, mowing, masticating, and prescribed burning. BLM teams completed hand thinning work, or the wintertime piling of materials to later burn, as recently as 2021.

Wildfire prevention is not the only goal of fuels treatments.

“Treatments don’t just reduce hazard fuels to help firefighters protect communities,” said Alison Dean, BLM Prineville District Fire Ecologist. “They also help restore the historical fire regime and the ecological health of the forest. They allow forests to regain resiliency to insect infestations and climate change as well as future fires.”

The work doesn’t stop after one success. Along with continued community engagement with fire suppression partners across central Oregon, BLM fire and aviation teams will continue tending to the land.

“The longevity of these treatments is ten to fifteen years max,” said Dean. “They need maintenance. The brush will be back.”

“We have done and will continue to do maintenance around La Pine,” said Osborne. “We plan to continue maintenance treatments as well as begin new treatments on our own and with our partners.”

To help prevent wildfires, learn more about the Bureau of Land Management Oregon/Washington’s fire restrictions.


-BLM-


The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

ADVISORY: Bureau of Land Management Associate State Director on Portland's upswing - 07/01/24

Who: Anita Bilbao, Bureau of Land Management Oregon/Washington Associate State Director with longtime connection to Portland

Date: Week of July 1st  

Where: Virtually or onsite at the Edith Green - Wendell Wyatt Federal Building

Portland, Ore. –  Anita Bilbao, Bureau of Land Management Oregon/Washington Associate State Director, is available to speak on the recent upswing of Portland. Her connection to the city began when she studied at Lewis & Clark College and later Portland State University. In Portland, she began her 25-year long career with the BLM. “It has been the people who have made my experiences in Portland memorable.” Recently, she has seen the changes the city has undergone. “While Portland has gone through a lot, I see a bright future for our vibrant city.”

RSVP: Jeanne Panfely, jpanfely@blm.gov

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in the 11 Western states and Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. In fiscal year 2018, the diverse activities authorized on BLM-managed lands generated $105 billion in economic output across the country. This economic activity supported 471,000 jobs and contributed substantial revenue to the U.S. Treasury and state governments, mostly through royalties on minerals.   

Western Oregon Resource Advisory Council to host meeting, south coast field tour, July 10 - 06/26/24

Coos Bay, Ore. – The Bureau of Land Management’s Western Oregon Resource Advisory Council will participate in a meeting at the Coos Bay District Office on July 10, 2024, from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Pacific Time and field tour to the Loon Lake Recreation Site and other public lands in the Coos Bay Area, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. PT.


“We are excited to tour through the coastal forest and visit one of our most popular recreation sites with our advisory council members,” said Heather Whitman, Roseburg District Manager. “The advisory council members provide important input to the agency on recreation and forest management, and nothing beats seeing the work in the field.” 


Before departing on the field tour, the RAC will conduct an in-person meeting, open to the public with a virtual participation option available on the Zoom platform. Topics for discussion include an update on the Secure Rural Schools grant application process and hearing from District Managers about current events in Western Oregon. The public is invited to attend, and a comment period is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. PT. Virtual participants must register for the Zoom meeting at: https://blm.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_aVYZROCdQIOn2f41Gsiyqw  


During the field tour, advisory council members will visit public lands east of Coos Bay, off Highway 38. At the Loon Lake Recreation Site, they will discuss recreation management, infrastructure improvements, and fee collection. The advisory council members will also tour BLM-managed forests to discuss forest management and habitat creation. 


Members of the public are welcome on the field tour. Those planning to attend must RSVP via email to m1harper@blm.gov at least one week before the field tour and must provide their own transportation and meals. Anyone attending who needs a reasonable accommodation, such as sign language interpretation, should let Megan Harper, Advisory Council Coordinator, know when RSVPing at m1harper@blm.gov or (541) 751-4353. 


The Western Oregon Resource Advisory Council meets multiple times a year. It is one of several citizen advisory councils throughout Oregon/Washington. The council’s 15 members are appointed by the Secretary of the Interior and represent a broad range of public land interests, including environmental, local government, recreation, timber, and tribal interests. The Western Oregon Resource Advisory Council advises the Bureau of Land Management’s Coos Bay, Medford, Roseburg, Northwest Districts, and parts of the Lakeview District.


For more information about the Western Oregon RAC, visit:  www.blm.gov/get-involved/resource-advisory-council/near-you/oregon-washington.


-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.