It's a tinder box right now in the Columbia Basin and a simple spark could lead to hundreds of thousands of acres potentially being burned to a crisp. Oregon has a fire right now raging in Wasco County and Oregon is sending in heavy reinforcements.

In a press release from Governor Kate Brown, Brown explains what resources are being allocated to Wasco County and the White River Fire.

Gov. Kate Brown this morning has declared the White River Fire a Conflagration. The White River Fire is active near the community of Pine Grove, in Wasco County. It has burned 4,500 acres as of this morning and is 10 percent contained.

The declaration made by Gov. Brown cleared the way for the State Fire Marshal to mobilize firefighters and equipment to assist local resources battling the fire.

The Office of State Marshal’s Red Incident Management Team has been mobilized. Three structural task forces from Central Oregon and Clackamas and Washington counties, and personnel from the OSFM, are arriving this morning and early this afternoon at staggered intervals using COVID-19 mitigation measures at the staging area in Tygh Valley. Crews will be working to protect threatened structures and property.

The Red Team’s Incident Commander Ian Yocum will unify command with the interagency team currently in place.

I hope they can get the White River fire under control and this summer season and heat is a reminder that a simple spark could send the area up in flames.

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