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Monday, September 5, 2016

9/05/2016 Rail Fire Update

Labor Day, continuing fireline repairs

Unity, Oregon – Seven hundred fifty-four firefighters and the staff needed to support them with helicopters, food, tools, radio communication, maps, plans, fuel and first aid are the tail end of a work force that mobilized from across the country to help fight the 41,716-acre Rail Fire. About 80% of the initial suppression and containment objectives have been met. These skilled crews and equipment are focused on clean-up and repair work that would exceed the capacity of the local Districts, making the fire area ready for winter precipitation and putting roads and trails back in pre-fire condition for the local community.

Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer. Yesterday there were strong winds, light rain showers and hail over the fire area. These damp conditions have reduced risk of the fire spreading, even when daytime temperatures return to seasonal averages (mid-70s) at the end of the week. The days are one hour and thirty-eight minutes shorter than they were when the Rail Fire started on July 31. Longer cooler, humid nights and shorter daily warm, dry “burn periods” also reduce the likelihood that the Rail Fire will come back to life. Continued small smoke plumes will remain visible and meandering smoldering of interior fuels will contribute to the mosaic of burn severity until snowfall extinguishes it completely.

As Forest visitors move around and weekend campers leave the area, drivers should be aware of current road closures and fire traffic. Although many roads have re-opened, some significant routes such as FR2652 between FR2640 and FR13 remain closed. This is because of poor road surface conditions, local hazards and firefighters working. Light showers are possible as clouds build up in the afternoon today and could also make local roads slick. Please drive carefully and be alert to fire crews, their vehicles and heavy equipment.

Northwest Incident Management Team 13
Brian Gales, Incident Commander

Fire at a Glance
41,716 acres
5 miles west of Unity,Oregon
Under Investigation

3 Crews
13 Engines
2 Dozers
22 Water tenders
1 Masticator

3 Type 1 heavy helicopters
1 Type 3 light helicopters

The area immediately around the Fire remains closed. Forest Road 16 remains closed south and east of the fire area. 2652 is closed between 2640 and FR13. Most other roads have been opened. The closure order and map can be seen at
Click “Maps” for the current closure map.

Fire Information:
(541) 446-3592

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