GALICE, Ore. – Oregon Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency on Saturday in response to the Rum Creek wildfire burning in the southwestern part of the state near the California border that has claimed the life of a 25-year-old firefighter and destroyed at least three structures.
The Rum Creek Fire has been burning since Aug. 17 after a lightning strike just outside Galice, Oregon, and as of Monday morning has scorched 10,050 acres and is only 1% contained.
One firefighter was killed one day after the fire began, according to the Oregon Department of Forestry.
Shortly after 4 p.m. on Aug. 18, officials learned that a firefighter had been critically injured after being struck by a tree while working to extinguish the Rum Creek Fire.
The firefighter, who was identified as 25-year-old Logan Taylor, was flown to a hospital to be treated, but later died.
“We are extremely saddened by the passing of Logan Taylor,” said Tyler McCarty, of the Oregon Department of Forestry, in a Facebook post. “This loss is deeply felt by our ODF family and throughout the wildland fire community as a whole,”
— ODF Southwest (@swofire) August 24, 2022
The Josephine County Sheriff’s Office said several evacuation orders had been given since the fire began, but no new orders have been received as of Sunday night.
In addition, the Rogue River has been closed to boating from Hog Creek downstream, including Russian Creek and the wild section of the river, according to officials. Recreational boaters will not be able to put in or take out starting at the Hog Creek Boat Ramp downstream to Grave Creek.
Recreation sites along the Rogue River from Hog Creek to Russian Creek are also closed.