MEDFORD, Ore. — With all the fires burning in California right now, you may be wondering…could something like that happen here in November?
The short answer is yes.
Despite frigid overnight temperatures, fire agencies say they’re on high alert.
“The conditions that we’re seeing this week really are increasing our risk for wildfires,” said Natalie Weber, Oregon Department of Forestry.
Fire season may be over, but the risk for fire is at the front of fire agencies’ minds, especially as they look to the Camp and Woolsey Fires burning in parts of California right now.
“We’ve actually been experiencing freezing temperatures and conditions and that dries out the fuels that we have and can actually create a greater risk for a fire,” said Weber.
Despite icy mornings, the ingredients a fire needs to ignite, ODF says, are all here.
“You wouldn’t necessarily think that, just because it’s so cold,” said Weber.
So, what exactly are these conditions we’re experiencing that cause a fire?
ODF says it’s lower relative humidity, winds, and cooler temperatures that dry out fuels along with a key factor that’s missing.
“We don’t have the rainfall yet to really mitigate a fire that starts,” said Melissa Cano, Medford Fire-Rescue.
Looking to California, Medford Fire-Rescue says it’s important to know we’re not in the clear.
It’s a harsh reality we must face and be prepared for.
“It’s talking to your family, have a plan, making sure you have some kind of kit or resources to get out fast,” said Cano.
Click here for more information on how best to prepare for an evacuation.
Amanda Rose is a multimedia journalist for NBC5 News. Amanda graduated from Columbia University earning a Master’s degree in Journalism. She also received a Bachelor’s degree in English with a specialization in literature from the University of British Columbia.
She’s a Los Angeles native, but is thrilled to return to the beautiful Pacific Northwest and is passionate about reporting on the criminal justice system.