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Rowena Fire update, Thursday evening

Rowena Fire

Daily Evening Information Update

August 7, 2014

Summary

Both crews from Oregon Department of Forestry and Oregon State Fire Marshal worked throughout the day to improve hand and dozer lines to prevent further fire travel. In the early afternoon wind speeds increased causing the fire to grow and travel toward the southwest more rapidly than expected. Both the Foley Lakes and Country Club areas experienced unfavorable wind conditions. In the Foley Lakes area, wind driven fire pushed back into the neighborhood that had just hours before had its evacuation level decreased from 3 to 1. Targeted evacuations were enacted to protect the residents in the area. In the Country Club area, fire was pushed across several lines and crossed the Rowena River Road near Adeline Road. Both fires received immediate response and were quickly mitigated.

Structural protection

Structure protection task forces worked throughout the day to improve defensible space around homes and outbuildings. When the Foley Lakes and Country Club fires flared up, task forces assigned to night shift were activated to respond.

Structural firefighters continued to create defensible space around structures in advance of the fire threat.

Evacuations

Level-3

4595 Hwy 30 west to 6464 Hwy 30, including Simonelli Rd, Tooley Terrace, Adeline Way and the Country Club.

Level-1

Murray's Addition, Foley Lakes, residences along Chenowith Loop West. Also Division Street Development residences along Seven mile Road.

Fire Strategy for Tonight

Today, fire control work will focus on reinforcing containment lines on the eastern edge of the fire, securing the northwest end of the fire and continuing structural protection along Highway 30 and other residences.

Warnings

An urgent red flag fire weather warning was issued at about 3:00 p.m. on Thursday 8/7/2014 for winds gusting to 30 mph and relative humidity as low as 24 percent. Fires can grow much faster in these conditions and be hazardous for firefighters. The red flag warning is in effect through 11:00 p.m.

Unified Command

The fire is being managed under a unified command between the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Office and Oregon Department of Forestry. This Unified Command is working for ODF Central Oregon District, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and Mid Columbia Fire & Rescue.

Fire-At-A-Glance

Size: 2,645 acres Location: The Dalles, OR

Containment: 0%

Cause: Under Investigation

Personnel: 431

Estimated Cost: $937,000

Evacuations and Road Closures: Wasco County Sheriff Evacuation Hotline: 541-506-2792

Closures/Restrictions: Hwy 30 between The Dalles Country Club and Rowena

Media Only Contact Phone: 503-793-1993

For More Information: A fire information line is currently being set up, the number will be distributed via social media once it is established.

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