At 9:20 AM, Portland Fire & Rescue was dispatched to reports of a grass fire across from Heron Lakes Golf course, at 3500 N. Victory Blvd.. Further reports indicated that the wind had blown a tree over, which in turn, pulled down energized power lines with it. Battalion Chief Terry Munro was the first to arrive and upgraded the incident to a wildland response. "We have a Red Flag Alert in the metro area," stated Munro. "The situation is complicated because of the power lines that are down."
Portland Fire crews stood by until Portland General Electric crews were able to respond and ensure that the power to the lines had been cut. Once the power lines had been shut down, Portland Fire crews moved in and quickly extinguished the fire, which had burned an area approximately 200' x 60'. Engine 8 (Kenton) was the first engine to arrive at the scene.
Total fire response included:
2 Brush Units
3 Chief Officers
1 Water Tender
Portland General Electric responds to incidents where their power lines are involved. These incidents include fires, vehicular accidents and downed trees. An Eagle Crew is usually sent out first, which consists of 1 trained line person. If the situation calls for a more resources, they can request a Line Crew, which has 3-5 crew persons. They carry much more equipment and work to mitigate the electrical problem so that the fire department can do their work.
Portland Fire reminds the public that the Fire Marshal has issued a burn ban. At this time the only fires allowed in the city of Portland are charcoal and propane barbecues. The dry conditions, coupled with the high winds that are forecast, create a tremendous potential for fires.