Shady Cove, Ore.-- Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber declared an emergency conflagration for the Rogue River Drive Fire Tuesday night. 134 homes are threatened and now the state Fire Marshal's Office will step in.
A storm cell caused the fire that started Monday at 100 acres grow an additional 120 acres. Tuesday night Jackson County Fire District 3 said the fire had burned more than 220 acres. Theysaid erratic winds pushed the fire out of the containment line.
Larry Sweem lives near the fire and saw helicopters filling up from the Rogue from his backyard deck.
"I'm feeling good I just know that the good lord has got us in his hand and we'll be fine,"said Sweem.
Because the fire is in steep terrain and dry fuel agencies quickly called for six helicopters and three air tankers.
"This was predicted and it always presents a challenge to us it tests our fire lines and unfortunately it blew out on southeast side," said Don Hickman with Jackson County Fire District 3.
Hickman said all the residents in the fire line including Sweem have been notified.
"We've made contact with all the homeowners just so they know where we're at with our fire fighting efforts."
Sweems just thankful that for now, his home is okay.
Fire officials said the people who live in the three homes under a mandatory evacuation are choosing to stay. And that there's a good defensible space around their homes.
But if they do leave they won't be able to return until the fire is more under control.
The storm system moving through Jackson County Tuesday afternoon had a direct impact on the Rogue River Drive Fire, near Shady Cove. Weather conditions aided the fire to gain momentum and cross containment lines.
There is now a LEVEL 1 evacuation for all residents on Rogue River Drive, from the 3,000 block until the intersection with Rhodes Lane. The Level 1 evacuation will also include all residents on Kitty Drive and Osprey Drive.
LEVEL 1: A Level 1 Evacuation means "BE READY" for potential evacuation.
Residents should be aware of the danger that exists in their area, monitor emergency services websites and local media outlets for information. This is the time for preparation and precautionary movement of persons with special needs, mobile property and (under certain circumstances) pets and livestock. If conditions worsen, emergency services personnel may contact you via an emergency notification system.
The increased fire activity has also threatened homes on Dry Creek Road. There is now a LEVEL 3 evacuation for all residents living on Dry Creek Road.
LEVEL 3: A Level 3 Evacuation means "GO" Evacuate NOW
Danger to your area is current or imminent, and you should evacuate immediately. If you choose to ignore this advisement, you must understand that emergency services may not be available to assist you further. DO NOT delay leaving to gather any belongings or make efforts to protect your home.
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