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Central Oregon Wildfire Information

Coronavirus Information

UDRC Defensible Space Reimbursement Program

The Defensible Space Reimbursement Program is open for new applications.

The intention of this program is to offer an incentive to South Deschutes County property owners. Creating defensible space will not only mitigate your wildfire risk, but help our communities become more fire adapted. Grant funds are available to help property owners within the Upper Deschutes River and La Pine Community Wildfire Protection Plan areas outside of Sunriver with the cost of creating or maintaining defensible space for wildfire risk reduction. The UDRC will reimburse your expenses for licensed fuels reduction contractors or rental equipment up to $500 maximum. One application from a sole or joint property owner may be submitted each year. The UDRC will not reimburse work completed before your application is approved. Applicants for the Reimbursement Program may not apply for the Low-income Senior program in the same year. Before beginning your fuels reduction project, click here for the online application form with instructions.

OSU Lecture Series Lookout: Envisioning Futures with Wildfire

In the 11-week lecture series, we’ve invited speakers who offer perspectives from across the arts, humanities, and environmental sciences to think about questions like: What can we learn about transformation from fire’s destructive and creative force? How should we live differently, both with each other and on the planet, in this era of wildfires? How can we honor fire as an ancient, rejuvenating element while also honoring all that has been lost to wildfire?

The talks in the series will be broadcast live on Zoom Tuesdays at 6 p.m. PST / 8 p.m. CST / 9 p.m. EST from January 4 to March 15. Free and open to everyone. Visit the link Lookout: Envisioning Futures with Wildfire.

My Personal Wildland Fire Action Guide

Proactive mitigation around your property and safe and early evacuation can help protect you, your household, and  your property. This Action Guide provides tips and tools you need to prepare for wildland fire threat, gain situational awareness when a fire starts, and act early as directed by local officials. Click here to view the guide.
This publication was prepared by the International Association of Fire Chiefs’ Ready, Set, Go! Program.

Deschutes County Awards $100,000 Amongst 33 Firewise Recognized Sites

A total of $100,000 is being dispersed to 33 Firewise sites for fuel reduction projects and fire preparedness.
Preference was given to communities or neighborhoods that are working to be recognized as a Firewise USA™ site or are currently recognized as a Firewise USA™ site and are proposing projects consistent with their Firewise action plan and community assessment.
These communities have worked with local partners to identify and prioritize work to reduce home ignition and vulnerability. Many of these projects involve removal and chipping of ladder fuels and reducing flammability within the immediate zone around homes.

Reporting Graffiti or Illegal Dump Sites

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office inmate work crews have been actively involved in the community by removing graffiti and cleaning up large collections of litter from property throughout Deschutes County. Click here to report graffiti or illegal dump sites in Deschutes County.

Oregon Department of Forestry Request for Grant Applications

The Small Forestland Grant Program funded by Senate Bill 762 will award $5 million to projects supporting small forestland owners across Oregon. Approximately $4.25 million will focus on projects treating multiple land ownerships to reduce the risk of wildfire and increase forest resiliency on private properties. Approximately $750,000 will support active Firewise USA communities to reduce hazardous fuels and protect community infrastructure. Grant criteria, applications, and instructions are available at Small Forestland Grant Program.
Proposals can be submitted to odf.sfgp@oregon.gov and must be received by Friday, January 21, 2022. A virtual event to discuss the program with potential applicants was held from 2–3 p.m. Monday, December 6. It will include an overview of the grant program and time for questions and answers. You can access the virtual event at applicant workshop video.

USFS Klone Vegetation Management Project

The Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District released a draft environmental assessment for the nearly 35,000-acre Klone Vegetation Management Project south of Bend for a 30-day public comment period. The 34,636-acre planning area is located south of Bend and east of Sunriver. About 10,550 acres on the west side of the planning area are within the wildland urban interface designated by the Upper Deschutes River Community Wildfire Protection Plan. The east side of the planning area borders Newberry National Volcanic Monument.

The purpose of the project is to improve forest resilience against uncharacteristically large disturbance events such as wildfire, insects, and disease through treatments such as thinning and fuels reduction. The project proposes to manage vegetation through silviculture techniques and prescribed fire, and to restore areas through road closures. The Forest Service’s environment assessment can be accessed on the Deschutes National Forest project website at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=57735.

Comments may be submitted electronically to comments-pacificnorthwest-deschutes-bend-ftrock@usda.gov. Please put “Klone” in the subject line of your email. Comments must be submitted as part of the actual e-mail message, or as an attachment in Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx), rich text format (.rtf), or portable document format (.pdf) only.

OSU Extension Webinars

Webinars are brought to you by the Forestry & Natural Resources Extension Fire Program with support from partnering agencies and organizations. Register for ALL Fire Aware. Fire Prepared. webinars here: https://beav.es/UgJ Click on resource packet that covers all spring Fire Aware. Fire Prepared. webinar topics. Webinar records are available.

Fire Season 2021 – A learning opportunity
Wednesday, November 10th, 2021 from 12:00-1:00pm

Prioritizing your home hardening approach
Wednesday, November 17th, 2021 from 12:00-1:00pm

From the home to the landscape: Fall Edition
Wednesday, December 1st, 2021 from 12:00-1:00pm

Prescribed fire
Wednesday, December 8th, 2021 from 12:00-1:00pm

USFS 42 Road Wildfire Resilience Project

The Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District is initiating an environmental analysis for the 42 Road GNA Wildfire Resilience Project located on the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District of the Deschutes National Forest. The project area is west of La Pine State Park near Fall River Hatchery and Wake Butte. Click here to view the Scoping Letter. For additional questions, please contact Alicia Underhill, Environmental Coordinator, by email at alicia.underhill@usda.gov or by phone at 541-383-4012.

Wildfire Home Retrofit Guide

This guide includes specific recommendations for how to retrofit existing components of a home to withstand wildfire. Each section contains an explanation of how the component is vulnerable to wildfire and what can be done to improve that component. The illustrations throughout the Guide are intended to show best practices for reducing the vulnerability of a home to wildfire. Click here to view the guide.

UDRC Defensible Space Program Featured In Midstate Electric Ruralite Article

The organization’s goal is to lessen the impact of wildfires on people’s lives and lifestyles, on their properties and structures, and on the natural resources of the area, including water, trees and wildlife habitat. “Fires can have a serious impact on communities,” says Jerry Hubbard, president of UDRC and a board member of the La Pine Rural Fire Protection District. “There’s been a positive response to the UDRC program. It’s a good incentive to get people to clean up their property.” Click here to read the article.

New Brochure Available From Project Wildfire

Project Wildfire recently completed a brochure for handouts to reach the average resident. The new tri-fold is available for pick-up from the Project Wildfire office at 61150 SE 27th St., Bend and a printer friendly version is available on the web. Click here for a printable brochure. Email boone.zimmerlee@deschutes.org to request copies for your network or community.

Wildfire Home Protection Strategies Workshop

Project Wildfire presents a Wildfire Home Protection Strategies class based on fire science research into how homes and other structures ignite during wildfires as well as information on wildfire behavior, structure exposure, and the concepts of defensible space. You will learn how to analyze wildfire risks to structures, provide actionable advice to property owners, and how to take action in your community. Click here to watch the video.

Firewise Communities Story Map

Deschutes County Project Wildfire has been working on a Story Map that focuses on the communities in Deschutes County that are either already a Firewise recognized site or interested in recognition. Through this story map we highlight the work communities have done, provide examples of projects, along with resources for new communities interested in becoming recognized.

Within the Story Map you will find an interactive map of past fires within Deschutes County along with a map of Firewise Recognized sites with a preview of the community, past projects, and contact info. In the “Becoming Firewise” portion of the Story Map you will find resources to help plan community projects and a checklist to assist new communities in navigating the process of becoming recognized. Click here to view the Story Map.

Three Rivers Area Wildfire Risk Report

This report from Headwaters Economics presents data about wildfire risk, socioeconomic vulnerability, and land use to help communities understand their relative wildfire risk profile. It was created through a partnership between Headwaters Economics and the U.S. Forest Service through the Community Planning Assistance for Wildfire program using data from Wildfire Risk to Communities. Click here to view the report.

NFPA Course: Understanding the Wildfire Threat to Homes

This online learning module is an overview of fire history, fire basics, and how homes burn. It’s an excellent resource for residents and other stakeholders that are pursuing knowledge on the basics of how wildfires ignite homes and the actions that can be implemented to make homes safer. Click here for more information.

Firewise Workshops – A Community Approach

We have recently completed a 3 part workshop covering Firewise Basics, Outreach Strategies and Community Project Planning. These workshops were held online with guest speakers including subject matter experts from our local communities and agencies throughout Deschutes County. The purpose of these workshops were to make connections across Firewise sites, share ideas and lessons learned. As an outcome of these workshops a network of support and resources were created to help Firewise sites succeed in their efforts. Click here to view the workshop videos and resources.

UDRC Low-income Senior or Disabled Defensible Space Program

The intention of this program is to offer assistance to property owners who cannot do the work themselves, or afford to hire someone else to do the work. UDRC has partnered with Council on Aging of Central Oregon to provide free wildfire fuels reduction services for low-income senior or disabled homeowners in South Deschutes County. Click here for a printable flyer describing the program. To apply for the Senior Low-income Defensible Space program, click here for the mail in application form with age and income requirements or call Council on Aging at 541-678-5483 to request the application form. Applicants for the Low-income Senior Program may not apply for the Reimbursement program in the same year.

2020 UDRC Wildfire Defensible Space Programs Summary

In 2020 Upper Deschutes River Communities continued providing financial assistance for property owners to create and maintain defensible space for wildfire risk reduction. The UDRC paid $29,480 to reimburse 53 property owners and funded 7 low-income senior defensible space projects. The UDRC is grateful for grant funding from the Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund, First Interstate Bank, and Burlington Northern Railway for our defensible space programs.

To help with our operating expenses, please consider a tax-deductible donation to the UDRC. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act has a provision allowing people to deduct up to $300 from their adjusted gross income on their tax return for charitable contributions. To make a donation click on Donate. Thank you for your support.