ODF making progress on Cheney Creek Fire in Josephine County

WILDERVILLE, Ore. —Fire crews made excellent progress overnight on the Cheney Creek Fire, on Marble mountain. The fire is estimated to be about 29 acres. It’s ODF’s largest fire of the season, so far.

Its affecting Bureau of Land Management and private land, on the mountain. Multiple resources including engines, a water tender, bulldozer, and aircrafts were sent to help stop the spread.

Thursday, resources are continuing mop-up operations, while waiting for potential spread and spot fires.

“As things get hotter, that fire activity potentially increasing a little bit and so we are just looking to hold those lines and mop up about 50 to 75 feet into the perimeter and just start making out way to the center,” said Natalie Weber with ODF.

ODF says reports show someone may have intentionally set numerous fires. Investigators are on scene.

With fire season in full swing, we’re checking in with ODF at the state level, to learn more about its night flying capabilities.

Currently, ODF does not have any night-flying helicopter resources. ODF  says it’s a program it is interested in but, it’s in the planning phase looking at budgeting. ODF says, the program is in the early stages across the nation and would require additional equipment, along with more qualifications for pilots.

“It certainly would give our firefighters working the nightshirt more options for suppression so currently they are limited to the water and resources that can be delivered from the ground so it would give us another option in terms of providing some much-needed resources,” said Jamie Knight with ODF.

She says ODF is interested in the night flying operations, but there is no time frame for when it could be available.

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Shellye Leggett is an anchor and producer for NBC5 News. You can also catch her anchoring on KMVU FOX26. She comes to the Rogue Valley from Albuquerque, New Mexico where she was a nightside reporter and fill-in weekend anchor for KOAT Action 7 News for 3 years. She has also reported in Colorado Springs, Colorado, South Bend, Indiana and Bozeman, Montana. Shellye was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. She graduated from North Park University in Chicago, Illinois with a B.A. in Communication Studies. She then earned a Master's degree in Broadcast Journalism from DePaul University in Chicago. In her free time, she loves to hang out with her husband who's in the Navy, her cat “Tootsie,” watch scary movies with friends and spend time with her extended family who live all over the West Coast. Shellye is excited to explore Southern Oregon and North California and tell your stories.
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