COLUMBUS, OH - An Ohio wildfire crew started suppression efforts this morning on a 6,500-acre fire located in central Oregons Umpqua National Forest. The crew will be constructing firelines and extinguishing smaller fires in an effort to protect more than 20 homes, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). Fire officials expect the blaze to be contained by early September.
The 20-person Ohio crew, the fourth sent by Ohio this fire season, includes four ODNR employees, five U.S. Park Service employees, three Wayne National Forest employees and eight private foresters and volunteer firefighters.
This crew marks the most wildfire fighters Ohio has ever sent for out-of-state fire protection measures, said Mike Bowden, wildfire coordinator for the ODNR Division of Forestry. These efforts help improve Ohio wildfire fighters skills, and better prepare them to battle fires during Ohios fire seasons.
Approximately 1,000 fires burn more than 5,000 acres annually in Ohio. Many of these fires occur during the spring and fall fire seasons. If the relatively dry conditions continue here in Ohio, there is potential for a severe fall fire season. Ohios fall fire season begins October 1.