October 21 2021
6:13 PM
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Story by Oregon Herald staff
Published on Thursday July 29, 2021 - 10:00 PM
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WALLOWA, Oregon - With fire activity diminishing and the focus moving to full mop-up operations, Oregon Department of Forestry's Incident Management Team 3 is starting to "right-size" the organization on the Elbow Creek Fire. Operations' Section Chief Eric Perkins says that will begin with sending some aircraft to either their home base or to other fires with a greater need.

The Elbow Creek Fire is approximately 22,955 acres and 50 percent contained.

Crews continued grid searching the east side of Elbow Creek for spot fires. After several days of tracking down numerous spot fires in the area, no new spots were discovered. Gridding and mopping up will continue.

Crews went direct on the fire line in Duckworth drainage, and the few spot fires discovered in the south and southwest area of the fire were mopped up 100%. Most of north and east perimeter of the fire are in full mop-up mode with continued use of handheld infrared heat detection devices.

Contingency work continues on the north side of the fire with crews improving roads and removing vegetation along these roads in the event a backup fire break be needed. Personnel on the incident number 1,015, with 34 engines, 11 dozers, 22 water tenders and 38 other heavy equipment.

There have been seven reportable illnesses/accidents on the incident to date; all of which were categorized as minor. One of the seven occurred yesterday which was an illness from a prior existing condition.

Today's weather is expected to be mostly sunny with little smoke and haze. The high will be 90-95 degrees, relative humidity 15 to 25 percent, and southwesterly afternoon winds from 3 to 7 mph with gusts to 14.

Evacuation levels within Wallowa County remain unchanged for now. Additional information on evacuation levels is available on the Wallowa County Sheriff's Office Facebook page (