Fire On Warm Springs Reservation Expected To Grow

Jul 22, 2013

Warm Springs' Kah-Nee-Ta Resort and Spa remains closed today as firefighters continue battle a large wildfire on the Warm Springs Indian reservation. 

The Sunnyside Turnoff Fire on the Warm Springs reservation has scorched more than 20 thousand acres and forced the evacuation of 40 homes.

William Wilson is the assistant fire management officer for Warm Springs.

"The situation now is fairly extreme" says Wilson.

He says the current weather outlook calls for continued dry and windy conditions. That has fire managers preparing for the possibility the fire could grow even larger.

"We expect significant runs of an additional 5, 10, to 15 thousand acres over the next couple of days" says Wilson.

More resources will be arriving throughout the day. An Type 2 Incident Management Team out of La Grande is expected to take over operations by the end of the day.

Wilson says so far, the fire hasn't damaged any homes. Although it did burn one uninhabited building described as a old "homestead".

Copyright 2013 Oregon Public Broadcasting