Douglas County Fire District No.2 firefighters were dispatched to a reported brush fire at 2500 SE Eagles Rest Avenue off of Ramp Road in Roseburg. It was reported that three juveniles were seen running away from the area of the fire. Responding fire crews reported smoke visible from several miles away. On arrival at the scene firefighters encountered a brush fire burning in deep grass, shrubs and trees along the nature’s trail that runs south of Eastwood Elementary School. Gusty winds pushed the fire up a slope on the terrain causing it to move quickly in the direction of several homes. The homes were never threatened as firefighters were able to commit multiple fire engines and contain the blaze on the green area around the trail. The fire was declared under control 20 minutes after the arrival of fire crews at the scene; although, firefighters remained on scene for approximately 50 minutes mopping up hot spots. In all this fire consumed ½ acre of vegetation.
Fire Department and Law Enforcement Officials were able to locate and question three white male juveniles who admitted to have been walking along the nature trail, lighting matches, throwing them on the dry grass to see it burn, and stomping the fire out. They indicated that a sudden gust of wind got the fire to quickly grow out of control despite their attempts to put it out. All three were taken into custody by Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputies.
“It is reckless for anyone to light fires given the daytime temperatures and drying conditions we are experiencing” said Fire Marshal Josep Pedrola.
No one was injured during the fire, and no structures or vehicles were damaged.
Fire Chief Greg Marlar stated “we were very fortunate today; all local resources were available, and worked seamlessly to stop the fire quickly and locate those responsible for it.”
DCFD2 responded to this incident with 2 brush engines, 1 fire engine, 1 water tender, 3 command units, and 18 firefighters. They were assisted by Douglas Forest Protective Association with 3 wild land engines, 2 brush engines, 1 Helicopter, 3 command units and 11 firefighters; Douglas County Sheriff; Roseburg Fire Department; Roseburg Police Department; and Oregon State Police.