Fire Crews Anticipate More Lightning

Aug 12, 2014

Credit USDA

Thunderstorms are expected to continue today and tomorrow in the Willamette Valley and Central Oregon. The chance of lightning will keep the red flag warning in effect and fire troops on the lookout for new starts.

More than 40 new fires started in the Willamette National Forest during the recent thunderstorms. Jean Nelson-Dean, with the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center explains how fire crews anticipate these new blazes.

Nelson-Dean: “We do pay a lot of attention to the weather to get a sense of where lightning storms are going to track and we preposition crews in areas where we know that there’s a potential for many starts. So, we then take our local resources first and then also some additional resources off some of the large fires.”

Nelson-Dean says fire crews are successful at putting out about 98 percent of lightning starts. Another wave of thunderstorms is projected to pass over the state Wednesday and Thursday, bringing rain showers to help dampen the flames.