Juniper Creek Fire | Evening Update – August 21, 2023

Firefighters achieve 30% containment on 106-acre Juniper Creek Fire

SISTERS, Ore. – Firefighters on the Juniper Creek Fire pushed containment to 30% today. During today’s operations, crews successfully positioned hose lines around the fire’s perimeter to “plumb” the fire line. This water is crucial for building containment during mop-up operations.

Mop-up operations consist of cooling the perimeter of the fire by extinguishing hotspots and removing unburnt materials to ensure the fire doesn’t reheat and cross the fire break. Mopup is especially crucial for fire around Juniper trees because the duff buildup under the trees can hold heat for a long time and reignite when temperatures rise. Even after mopup is complete, firefighters will patrol the fire throughout summer.

The fire is now placed at 106 acres from accurate GPS mapping. Above the fire, ODF’s Multi-Mission Aircraft flew around the fire to help identify hotspots using infrared and thermal sensors and relayed that data to firefighters on the ground.

Crews on the fire include one helicopter, five dozers, two skidgines, ten engines, two tenders and more than 100 personnel. A portion of these resources are from an ODF strike team that was prepositioned to the area to provide capacity for just this purpose.

“Our firefighters did an outstanding job placing dozer line around the fire last night, and we’re building off that progress to establish containment so we can get back to readiness,” said ODF administrator Chase Duncan. “We’re very proud of their work, the management of the COFMS IMT, and the support of all our partners. We had a lot of partners provide initial attack and support, from our federal partners at the Forest Service and BLM, to Lake Chinook RFD, Jefferson County Sheriff’s, and private contractors. This has been an incredible team effort on behalf of the public.”

Evacuation Changes:  The previous Level 3 (go now) has been reduced to LEVEL 2 effective at 1pm today 8/21/23 .

Level 2 evacuation remains in place through the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office (www.jeffco.net/sheriff) for: Three Rivers Subdivision and the area within the 590 A road Jordan to the gravel dump west of the 590 A road South in Geneva RD past the cemetery. Fire officials are asking the public to avoid travelling on area roads near the fire to allow for emergency responders and equipment to reach the fire. For information about evacuations, contact Sergeant David Pond at 541-475-6520 or [email protected].

The Juniper Creek Fire is located near the Three River area west of Lake Billy Chinook. It’s 16 miles northeast of Sisters on ODF-protected lands within the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Central Oregon District. The fire is under the command of the interagency Central Oregon Fire Management Service (COFMS) Incident Management Team.

Early on, the fire was quickly burning southeast and quickly grew to 100 acres. Active on three sides and driven by wind, the fire was running and spotting ahead of the fire. The fire started sometime around 11:00 am on Sunday, August 20, 2023. The cause is under investigation.


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