Although the Nakia Creek fire grew to 1,869 acres overnight, authorities are optimistic that containment efforts will continue to progress over the next few days as more firefighters arrive and aircraft return to combat this blaze that has affected 40,000 people over the last few days.
Dave Larson, Deputy Incident Commander, Assistant Fire Marshall Curtis Evenson, Sgt. Chris Skidmore, of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, and Natalie Weber, Oregon Forestry Department spokesperson, all addressed media at Grove Field Wednesday.
Larson said “this fire is the number one priority in the nation” given the number of people it is affecting. He said more than 500 firefighters are now at the scene working to contain this fire that ignited on October 9.
- 550+ firefighters are on the scene
- Sheriff’s deputies made an arrest Tuesday night for trespassing in the fire zone
- Evacuation zones are shrinking
- Containment is 12 percent
- This is the highest priority fire in the nation
- Aircraft are back on the scene
- Weather forecast over the next few days is favorable
- Focus is on level 2 and 3 evacuation zones
- There’s been a good response to the fire investigation
“Aircraft are back on the scene,” said Weber, “and this is a game changer.”
She reported the fire is 12 percent contained and it burning 1,869 acres at this time.
Evenson, who is leading the investigation into the cause of the fire, said their agency has been flooded with calls and tips about the four persons of interest (two women, two men) who were driving a white Subaru at the scene of the initial spark.
“We encourage you to call us, to talk about this, to sort it out,” he said.
Skidmore said the evacuation zones are shrinking and that they are only focusing on level 2 and 3 zones, and are working to get Livingston Mountain residents back to their homes. He added that a man was arrested Tuesday night for trespassing into the fire zone. It was quickly learned there was a warrant out for his arrest on a prior charge.