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The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Water Bureau

From forest to faucet, we deliver the best drinking water in the world.

Customer Service: 503-823-7770

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

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Portland Water Bureau Returns to 100 Percent Bull Run Water

The Portland Water Bureau has returned to 100 percent Bull Run water supply. Due to a temporary shortage of ammonia at our Lusted Hill treatment facility, the Water Bureau had been blending the Bull Run supply with approximately 50 percent groundwater. This blend lasted for less than 24 hours. The activation of groundwater was not due to the Eagle Creek Fire.

It may take up to two weeks, depending on your location, for the change in source water to move through the distribution system. The Bull Run Watershed and the Columbia South Shore Well Field are both high quality water supplies which meet or surpass all federal and state drinking water regulations.

Customers with questions are encouraged to call the Water Line at 503-823-7525.

Sept. 8 Update on the Eagle Creek Fire and Bull Run Watershed

Eagle Creek Fire Updates Sept 8th

Our most recent update from Incident Command tells us that less than one percent of the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit has been burned by the Eagle Creek Fire. Incident Command is the lead agency in fighting the Eagle Creek Fire. It is made up of the U.S. Forest Service, the Oregon Department of Forestry, and local fire departments.

The one percent of the Bull Run Watershed that has been burned is on the northwest corner of the watershed boundary. At this time, the fire is not near the drinking water reservoirs or water supply infrastructure. Water from the Bull Run continues to be safe to drink.

Fire fighters entered the watershed yesterday and evaluated Water Bureau structures. They found that the water supply structures, including Headworks, are “highly defensible.” The agencies have said they will prioritize protecting the Bull Run Watershed.

The Water Bureau has returned to 100 percent Bull Run water supply. Yesterday, our ammonia vendor had a logistical complication with its transportation contractor, resulting in a temporary shortage of ammonia to our Lusted Hill treatment facility. The Water Bureau responded by activating a groundwater blend for less than 24 hours. The activation of groundwater was not due to the Eagle Creek Fire. If the need arises to switch to the Columbia South Shore Well Field, this high-quality secondary water supply is ready for activation.

Unified Incident Command is establishing fire breaks along the southern flank of the fire. The Water Bureau is cooperating with that effort as Unified Command establishes fire lines within the northern perimeter of the watershed. The bureau is helping to provide access to firefighters by opening watershed gates and providing portable restrooms to meet their sanitation needs.

Water quality monitoring continues in the Bull Run and the water remains safe to drink. In past fires near the watershed, falling ash did not have a measurable impact on water quality.

The Water Bureau continues coordination with the Unified Incident Command. The bureau has staff stationed at the Unified Command’s fire camp in Odell, Oregon. Staff is directly coordinating with the fire crews that are fighting the fire near the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit.

Water Bureau managers; emergency management professionals; water quality, water system operations and natural resources experts; engineers; security; and communications staff, are actively coordinating with Unified Command in this emergency.

For the most updated information about the fire, check the Incident Information System website at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5584/.

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Sept. 11 Update on the Eagle Creek Fire and Bull Run Watershed

Eagle Creek Fire Updates Sept 11th

Incident Command, the lead agency in fighting the Eagle Creek Fire, tells us that as of Sept. 11, 2017, based on infrared imagery data from the early morning of Sept. 11, the fire has burned approximately 100 to 150 acres inside the Bull Run Management Unit, but not inside the actual Bull Run watershed. This is less than one percent of the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit.

Protecting the Bull Run remains a top priority of the fire response. At this time, the fire is not near the drinking water reservoirs or water supply infrastructure. Water from the Bull Run continues to be safe to drink. 

Unified Command notified the bureau today that firefighters have surveyed the southern and southwestern boundary of the fire closely Sunday evening to get a closer look at the approximately 100—150 acres that have burned within the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit. All indications show that area is currently mostly smoldering or burning with very low intensity.

Unified Incident Command has established firelines along existing road systems within the northern edge of the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit along the southern flank of the fire. “Firelines are constructed to prevent fire growth and to minimize impacts to values at risk,” said Beale Monday, Operations Section Chief, Southwest Incident Management Team 2. The bureau is managing watershed gates to provide access to firefighters.

Unified Command will continue to monitor the area as the weather shifts through Tuesday to lower humidity and occasional gusts of up to 25 mph from the east.

Water quality monitoring continues in the Bull Run and the water remains safe to drink. Only essential duties are being carried out within the watershed this week. Very few people have essential duties within the watershed this week. Those staff have already been notified.

Please take a look at the Water Bureau’s Frequently Asked Questions, which posted yesterday and continue to be updated.