Governor Kitzhaber invoked the Emergency Conflagration Act on Thursday, August 8, in response to fires burning near John Day in Grant County.
In accordance with ORS 476.510-476.610, Governor Kitzhaber determined that a threat to life, safety, and property exists due to the fire and that the threat exceeds the fire-fighting capabilities of local fire-fighting personnel and equipment.
By invoking the Emergency Conflagration Act, the Governor ordered the Oregon State Police and the Oregon State Fire Marshal to mobilize fire resources statewide and coordinate with all appropriate Fire Defense Chiefs for the use of personnel and equipment to suppress and contain the fire.
"With the fires approaching John Day and the Malheur National Forest, the State Fire Marshal and the Department of Forestry are working closely together with the local community to minimize threats to people and property," said Governor Kitzhaber. "I have directed all available state resources to help contain the fire and ensure that nearby communities have every resource necessary to protect their citizens."
This emergency is declared only for the fires in Grant County and was effective immediately. The fire was previously estimated to be 2,000 acres, but has grown over the past 24 hours due to changing wind directions, and its current size is not currently known. Crews battled the fire overnight, and pre-evacuation notices have been issued to residents near the fire.