Our Northwest

Eugene sets heat record; wildfires still igniting

Wednesday, September 17, 2014by  Jon Osterberg

Much was said about how hot Spokane’s and Seattle’s summers have been. Spokane sizzled in July, and Seattle logged its warmest average daytime high, 80.0 degrees, for all of July and August.
   Now we learn Eugene has set a record for days at 90 degrees or higher: 35 days and counting, as of Sept. 15.
   Scientists at Oregon State University say their research shows temperatures across the Northwest have been rising since 1901, and that we can expect more summer droughts and wildfires in future years. Read The Register Guard article.
   Just as many residents thought wildfire season was winding down, new blazes broke out this week. The northern California town of Weed suffered a devastating fire Monday that damaged or destroyed 150 structures, including two churches and a lumber mill. Firefighters battled brush fires in east Cle Elum and near Crescent Bar, while seven wildfires continue to rage in Oregon.
   It’s still summer, and wildfire danger is not over. Although May is the ideal time for rural residents to clear their property of fuel like dead branches, dry brush, and parched grasses, doing it now is better than doing nothing. Check out our online Don’t Get Burned! resources.

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