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Beach Fire Bans Official on Most of Oregon Coast, Other Restrictions

Published 08/06/21 at 5:42 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Beach Fire Bans Official on Most of Oregon Coast, Other Restrictions

(Lincoln City, Oregon) – As of Wednesday, beach fires have been banned everywhere on the Oregon coast except for the northern counties of Tillamook and Clatsop (Pacific City through Astoria). According to Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), all open flames of any kind are not allowed on the beaches from Neskowin down through Brookings – which includes Lincoln City, Newport, Florence, Reedsport, Coos Bay, Bandon, and Gold Beach as well as all beaches in between. It also includes the Tillamook County town of Neskowin. (Photo above courtesy Oceanside-Netarts Fire District: hillside fire started by a beach fire at Short Beach this week)

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The bans are in effect until further notice. Lincoln County is adding extra fire bans to other areas beyond the beaches starting August 13.

Extremely dry conditions as well as a run of dangerous close calls with driftwood fires that got out of control in the last few weeks have caused community leaders, the Oregon Department of Forestry and OPRD to come together on the ban.

“Fire ban includes wood, charcoal briquettes, candles, tiki torches and other devices that emit flames or embers,” said OPRD in a news alert. “Propane stoves and other cooking devices that have a shutoff valve are allowed.”

The beach fire ban does not necessarily include campgrounds: some camping spots on the Oregon coast do allow it, except for Lincoln County. See the state park status page before you go.

OPRD said to look for signs at each beach access.

Lincoln County officials announced today they would be issuing a ban on all fires within county lines, including the areas of Lincoln City, Gleneden Beach, Depoe Bay, Newport, Waldport, Seal Rock and Yachats.

Beginning at 8 a.m. on August 13, the countywide ban goes into effect, banning wood, charcoal, and other flame sources that cannot be turned off with a valve in not just beaches and day use areas but also commercial, private and county campgrounds.

Fuel sources that can be turned off will be allowed, however.

Chief Bryan Daniels, Lincoln County Fire Defense Board Chief, said fire dangers are at an extreme high risk right now due to conditions and weather, and local fire agencies are continuing to assist other areas in Oregon for active fires, limiting resources to respond to a wildland fire.

“Oregon is entering its second consecutive dry summer and is bracing for what has already proved to be another devastating wildfire season," Daniels said in a statement. "While some wildfires are a natural part of Oregon's landscape, the fire season in Oregon and across the West is starting earlier and ending later each year. Sadly, we are no exception in Lincoln County. Warmer spring and summer temperatures, reduced rainfall, and earlier record high temperatures create longer and more intense dry seasons that increase moisture stress on vegetation and make our landscape more susceptible to severe wildfire. As the seasonal grasses and fuels have already cured in the East, the coastal communities of the West are rapidly catching up. Fuel moistures are at an all-time low."

Daniels also cited the recent memory of the tragic Echo Mountain Complex fire last year outside of Lincoln City.

Bans have been in effect on the south coast since July. The middle third of the coast was added this week.

A run of dangerous driftwood fires has plagued the Oregon coast, including one at Crissey Field last week near Brookings, the massive hillside fire this week near Oceanside, another serious fire in Lincoln City in recent weeks, and more. Thursday also saw a sizable fire at the Highway 18 summit that closed the highway for awhile.

See Another Driftwood Fire Out of Control on Oregon Coast, Threatens Homes + Beach Fires Becoming a Problem on Oregon Coast - Already Banned South 

On the north Oregon coast, while there are no fire restrictions yet, locals are clamoring for it.

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Below: the aftermath of the Oceanside fire this week (courtesy photo)

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