Governor Declares State of Emergency
August 17, 2012, 11:09 am
Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber has declared a State of Emergency in the wake of our high heat and wildfire dangers. The declaration means National Guard helicopters can be used and more crews will tackle the six major fires burning over 130,000 acres in Oregon.
Hikers and campers near Bobby Lake in the Cascade Range and the nearby Pacific Coast Trail have been warned to stay away because of a new 15-acre wildfire that started Wednesday. The Waldo Lake area has also been put on alert. It's part of the Buckhead complex of fires burning on about 270 acres between Eugene and Bend.
In Southern Oregon, residences 20 miles west of Lakeview were advised to evacuate as the Barry Point Fire continues to spread. The lightning-caused blaze has grown to almost 80,000 acres and is now 30% contained.
Meantime in Washington, 1,000 firefighters are making progress on a stubborn wildfire that's burned dozens of homes. The Taylor Bridge Fire is now 33% contained. In all, 70 homes and 200 outbuildings have been destroyed, but none in the past two days. It's burned 35 square miles east of Cle Elum since Monday.
Many people have been allowed back into their neighborhoods and were shocked to find their homes still standing. Their survival is being attributed to metal roofs.