PENDLETON — A majority of the fires in the Umatilla National Forest’s HK complex have been contained according to a Thursday morning press release as firefighters transitioned command from a Type 3 management team to a Type 2 team at 6 a.m.
The HK Complex consists of 13 fires sparked by lightning that are burning 15 miles north of Monument on the Heppner Ranger District. 8 of those fires have been 100% contained by Thursday while the fires have grown to 2,455 acres in total.
The Sulfer Springs fire was active on Wednesday and pushed toward the 21 road, where it is being contained by dozer lines. The Little Bear fire is 50% lined but aviation resources stalled on Wednesday due to lightning in the area.
According to the press release, 474 personnel have been assigned to the fire with multiple engines and crews, along with multiple fixed-wing resources from John Day Airbase.
Fire officials warn that a red flag warning remains in effect until Saturday at 10 a.m. with danger levels high and public use restrictions on chain saw use in effect. Winds are expected to be light with high temperatures, while Friday is also expected to be partly cloudy with scattered showers. Thunderstorms are expected over the next couple of days.
A closure order in the area is also in effect due to the fire activity. People are urged to be cautious while driving in the area and to expect increased fire traffic on the roads.