Forest / Wild Fire in USA on September 05 2017 04:14 AM (UTC).
Oregon's largest wildfire showed major growth Monday, prompting a fresh round of evacuation orders on the east and west sides of the fire. The Chetco Bar Fire, burning in southwest Oregon, grew to 167,513 acres and is spreading to the east, south and north, officials said. Fueled by temperatures in the 100s and bone-dry fuel, the fire was active on multiple fronts, sending spot fires across containment lines and showing no signs of moderating, officials said. The spread was enough to bring new evacuations to the Illinois Valley, on the east side of the fire, and to the Brookings area, on the west. A level 3 evacuation order - which means "go now" - was issued for residents on Illinois River Road west of the small town of Selma, some 21 miles southwest of Grants Pass. Additionally, a level 1 evacuation - which means "get ready" - has been issued for all residents in the Illinois Valley west of U.S. Highway 199 from Hayes Hill to the California state line. That would apply to the small towns of Selma, Kerby, Cave Junction and O'Brien. On the west side of the fire, officials decided late Monday night to issue a level 3 evacuation north of Brookings for the Carpenterville area. It's unclear how many new people have been displaced by the new evacuation orders, but previous evacuations displaced more than 4,000 people. Fire spokesman Terry Krasko stressed that residents in Brookings and Cave Junction were not in immediate danger. The fire remains about five miles from Brookings. Krasko said he couldn't speculate how far the fire was from the Highway 199 corridor and Cave Junction. As recently as Sunday, fire officials said the blaze was still around 10 to 12 miles away, but that likely changed Monday. "This is precautionary - the fire isn't there and it may never come in there," Krasko said. "If there is an immediate danger, we'd make sure to give people 24 hours of notice." Fire officials addressed residents of the Illinois Valley Sunday night in a community meeting in Cave Junction. They offered a sober assessment of the situation. Officials said that because of the number of fires in the West, there wouldn't be any additional resources available beyond the 1,600 people currently working the fire. "We're not going to get more help," said Noel Livingston, one of the incident commanders on the Chetco Bar Fire, at the meeting. "We're going to have to do this with the people we have now. "It's going to move in this direction, no doubt about it."