Forest Grove Fire & Rescue
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News Release
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Powerlin Fire Information - Update 1 (Photo) - 09/10/20

Thursday Morning Update:

An update to the Powerline Fire near Hagg Lake. Crews have made great progress on enforcing the containment lines, this is aided by decreased wind activity. The fire is currently at 175 acres in size and still at 50% containment. Evacuation levels are still the same. We are working with the Washington County Sheriff's Office to use with airplane to get a full view of the fire with their thermal camera. Hagg Lake remains closed due to crews working in the area as well as aircraft dipping for water. Currently Super Scooper aircraft (dual engine float planes) are getting water from the Hagg Lake, but are using it on the Chehelam Mountain-Bald Peak Fire that TVF&R is battling. Yesterday (Wednesday), the Clatsop County Task Force was requested by the State Fire Marshal's Office to re-deploy to the fire in Clackamas County. We will provide an additional press release this evening with further updates, if emergent information comes up we will release it immediately.

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Original Press Release

Summary:

Yesterday, September 8th at 6:11am Gaston Fire District was dispatched to a reported brush fire between the area of Cherry Grove and Hagg Lake. Finding the fire was difficult as it was in the middle of forest land and not by any major roads. Access was eventually made to the fire and extinguishment efforts were started, but slowed down by a downed power line, which is believed to have started the fire. Crews have been working since the then non-stop to contain and extinguish the fire. The fire was declared a conflagration with the Oregon State Fire Marshal, because of this we received assistance from a Clatsop County Task Force that is being used by incident commanders. Resources for this fire are minimal as they are throughout the county, state and whole West Coast. We are having to share with many other fires that are occurring in our state.

Current Information:

Evacuations:

Evacuation Levels have not changed since yesterday when the information was released by WCSO.
Level 3 (Go!) orders for SW Dundee Road, SW Patton Valley Road, SW Lee Road to Cherry Grove, SW Cascara Road and Cherry Grove Community.
Level 2 (Be Set!) for SW South Road between SW Mount Richman Road and the community of Cherry Grove.
Level 1 (Be Ready!) for areas south of Cherry Grove, not already in Level 2 or 3.

Evacuees that need shelter should go to the Mountain Side High School (12500 SW 175th Ave, Beaverton, OR 97007) which is set up by Red Cross. This is a shared shelter with the fire on Mountain Top/Chehelam Mountain.

If you have livestock and need a place to shelter them, the Washington County Fairgrounds is an option. If you're in need of this resource please email leah_perkins-hagele@co.washington.or.us

If you'd like to make donations, we ask that citizens hold off for now. We appreciate the consideration, but our crews are being fed well and kept hydrated. If you'd like to assist those evacuated, we suggested donating to the Red Cross.

We are not in need of civilian assistance with equipment or persons.

Current fire incident information:

Crews are still actively enforcing fire perimeter lines with work from bulldozers and hand crews. The fire size is very roughly estimated at 50 acres with 50% containment. There have been no houses or other buildings burned. Crews are being assisted by air assets from Fire Boss Scooper Planes and bucket drops from helicopters. At 3:17pm a helicopter did make a safe emergency landing at Hagg Lake during a bucket fill, due to a hydraulic failure, but sustained no damage or injuries to the crew. Today fire conditions have decreased from yesterday thanks to a decrease in intensity of the East wind. We are still under a Red Flag warning for high temperatures, low humidity and windy conditions, which are still helping fan the flames.

Additionally info:

Oregon Department of Forestry has informed us that all forest lands in Northwest Oregon are closed effective immediately until September 13th.

We will post additional updates tomorrow unless pressing information occurs like additional evacuations.

So far, Gaston Fire District has been assisted on scene by Forest Grove Fire & Rescue, Cornelius Fire Department, Banks Fire District, Hillsboro Fire & Rescue, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, Oregon Department of Forestry (Forest Grove Office and South Fork Crews), Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Washington County Parks Department (Hagg Lake), Dundee Fire Department, Carlton Fire District, Amity Fire District, McMinnville Fire Department as well as other private contract crews. The Clatsop County Task Force is made up of departments from Astoria Fire Department, Olney-Walluski Fire & Rescue, Gearhart Fire Department, Nehalem Bay Fire-Rescue, Knappa-Svensen-Burnside Fire District and Seaside Fire Department.

Please email PIO with info request due to lack of cell phone coverage for calls and texting. Email is still working on tablet.

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