Beachie Creek Fire Update, September 19, 2020

BEACHIE CREEK FIRE UPDATE – September 19, 2020  

Firefighters Make Good Progress with Improved Weather Conditions 

                                 Smoke lifts, improving air quality and visibility.    

Salem, Ore. – Rainfall over the last 24 hours decreased fire behavior and allowed firefighters to make a lot of progress securing the perimeter of the Beachie Creek Fire. This amount of precipitation does not put the fire out. Smoldering, small flames, and smoke will continue to be observed throughout the fire area. The emphasis for firefighters remains on protecting communities to the south and west of the fire. Firefighters continue to strengthen the lines around Scotts Mills, Stayton, Lyons, Mill City, and Detroit. Other crews continue to put in line to protect timber investments on the north side of the fire near Scotts Mills. Firefighters will continue to monitor the area for hazards related to precipitation. 

As smoke lifted, visibility on the fire improved. This will allow firefighters to utilize aircraft and to better assess certain areas of the fire. For the safety of firefighters and so that they can continue with air operations, the public is reminded that “If you fly, we can’t.” There is a temporary flight restriction around the entire area of the fire.  

The Incident Command Team continues to address infrastructure and community needs by assisting power companies, insurance companies, and communication firms. The Team is providing these organizations with information, logistics, and transportation support. This work is important for residents and community members returning to the area. 

Fire officials also continue to work closely with the Marion County and Linn County Sheriff’s Offices, ODOT and the Oregon State Police to coordinate residents’ return to Santiam Canyon. Currently 1,118 structures are at Level 3 evacuations and another 4,574 are in level 2 evacuations. As more residents are allowed back into the area, it is imperative that everyone heeds road closures and safety messages. Anyone who enters the fire perimeter jeopardizes firefighting operations and puts lives at risk. 

Lingering showers are predicted through most of Saturday, ending in the evening. Minimum relative humidity levels will generally be above 60% across the fire area. High temperatures will range from upper 50s to upper 60s. More precipitation is not expected for the next few days, but temperatures will remain cooler and overnight relative humidity will increase which is typical for this time of the year. 

The Willamette National Forest, Bureau of Land Management, and State lands around the fire remain closed to the public. Go to InciWeb (link below) for more information about closures in the area. 

Public Contact Information:  Facebook: facebook.com/BeachieCreek  E-mail: [email protected]   Phone: 541-583-0526, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Inciweb  https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7001/  Smoke and Air Quality https://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com/p/air-quality-now.html    https://wildlandfiresmoke.net/outlooks 

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