JUNCTION CITY/HELENA – The Helena Fire that sprung up Wednesday continues to grow and threaten homes.
Around 5:10 Wednesday evening, firefighters responded to the wildfire between Helena and Junction City.
Since then, the blaze has grown to 5,000 acres.
Record heat and dry conditions are challenging fire personnel – right now 13 engines, 4 crews and aircraft are at work controlling the flames and protecting over 2,000 threatened structures.
Highway 299 is closed east of Junction City and west of Helena Bridge.
Travelers should take alternate routes.
Evacuation orders are in effect for residents between Helena and Oregon Mountain Summit, including the Canyon Creeks area.
About 2,000 people have been evacuated so far.
An evacuation center has been set up at the First Baptist Church in Weaverville.
Large animals can be taken to Lowden Park on Washington Street.
Fire officials have set up a contact number to notify those who have been evacuated about any property damage at (530) 623-1726.
If you want to give to organizations helping fire victims during this time – including the Red Cross and Trinity Animal Hospital – a Gofundme page has been set up to accept donations: www.gofundme.com/helenafire