The Eagle Creek Fire is 17 percent contained. Firefighting efforts are focused on protecting communities, infrastructure, and other values at risk. Protecting the Bull Run is a top priority of the fire response.
The already established fire in the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit continues to burn at a low intensity and creep through the ground fuels along the far northeast and northwest corners of the management unit, near Bell Creek. The fire is not in the watershed drainage. Unified Command tells us this growth was expected, resulting from a drying trend and winds that culminated Tuesday. Fuels responded as expected. The fire is expected to continue to creep along the northern edge of the watershed until significant precipitation occurs.
Based on infrared data as of Sept. 14, 2017, the Portland Water Bureau has developed an updated fire perimeter map. Please check the map periodically for updated maps on the fire perimeter in relation to the Bull Run watershed.
Unified command is responding by continuing to establish fire lines along existing roads within the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit to protect against a southward push from the main body of the fire. Because of the fuel type, topography, and elevation, Unified Command has a greater focus on preventing the fire from moving along the northwest perimeter of the management unit. There have been active helicopter water drops in the western portion of the fire on the management unit perimeter.
Today’s data from Unified Command tells us that the fire remains at approximately 100 to 150 acres inside the Bull Run Management Unit, but not inside the actual Bull Run watershed. Current estimates remain at less than one percent of the Bull Run Watershed Management Unit, affected along the northern boundary. The Bull Run reservoirs and water supply infrastructure are not near the areas that have burned.
The bureau continues to serve Bull Run water, which is being rigorously monitored and remains safe to drink.
Weather will continue to be closely tracked. Weather is predicted to remain cooler with higher relative humidity and light winds through this evening. Friday and Saturday may present some challenges, with a potential for light east winds and lower relative humidity. Rain is still predicted for Sunday evening and Monday, forecasted at a half inch to two inches of precipitation early next week.
Water Bureau staff will continue to coordinate with Unified Command.