Smoke and the Willamette valley

Well as we can all see, it seems as if our entire state is covered in smoke and a good portion of it is. It is unsettling to me, and I know it is to all of you as well so I wanted to get with you all and put a little perspective on this.

Before Europeans settled the Willamette Valley, grass and forest fires were common. Most of the grass fires were started by the Native Americans who inhabited this valley and most of the forest fires were lightning caused as most of the current fires are. At times the smoke was so intense that the indigenous populations would move out of the valley and towards the coast or to higher elevations. So as unsettling and unpleasant as this is, it happens from time to time in this valley. This year is certainly the worst in my memory.

When will it end? It will likely be around in some form for a good part of the next couple of weeks although perhaps not this intensely. Wind and cooler temperatures which are on the way will help but right now most of the fires are uncontained and will need a break from wind and weather to start abating. It is estimated that the Brookings/Chetco fire will not go out till the rains come in October

So, what to do? If you don’t have to go outside don’t, if you do, try to limit the amount of time you need to do so. We will provide masks for those who do need to go outside, see Summer Clark in Safety.

Don’t worry, it will end sooner or later, just keep about your business and we will all make the best of this and come out the other end just fine.

I will be right here with you.


Share Button