BROOKINGS – There’s good news regarding the Chetco Bar Fire that had been camping on the doorstep of Brookings the last few days. A red flag warning is still in effect but personnel have stopped the forward momentum of the big blaze.
Fire officials were very enthusiastic regarding their success and were helped by some unexpected mild weather. Increased winds and hot dry temperatures are forecast for Monday and will likely grow the fire and test the lines.
Very heavy smoke is expected over the next several days. Gold Beach and the Brookings-Harbor areas will see the majority of impact along with the Rogue Valley. Unhealthy and very unhealthy air quality conditions will be present along with reduced visibility along the Highway 101 corridor.
The huge blaze is nearing 108,000 acres and is still 0-percent contained. The smoke column has reached over 20-thousand feet.
Crews will continue to strengthen and mop up containment lines on the southwestern corner of the fire. Structure protection efforts continue, focusing on reducing fuels around homes. The structure protection group is also installing hose-lays and sprinkler systems. Citizens are encouraged to ration their water use.
A community fire briefing was held at 6 PM Sunday at Brookings/Harbor High School to update fire information for local residents.
Drone photo courtesy: Mathew Eastaff