June 8, 2014 in Region

Wildfires in Oregon prompt evacuations

Associated Press
 

BEND, Ore. – Two wildfires burning northwest of Bend forced the evacuation of dozens of homes and scorched about 300 acres Saturday, authorities said.

The fires were burning about two miles away when authorities issued the evacuation notice for the Saddleback area about 4 p.m. Saturday, said Capt. Shane Nelson of the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office. The subdivision has about 75 to 100 homes, Nelson said. Later in the evening, sheriff’s office volunteers were evacuating residents on Skyliners Road, west of Bend, Nelson said in a statement.

The Red Cross said it had opened a shelter at a middle school in Bend. Several roads were closed.

Firefighters attacked the blazes with three hand crews, including elite hot shot crews from Redmond and Prineville, along with 13 fire engines, three air tankers, two helicopters, a bulldozer and a water tender.

The blazes were burning in a mix of Deschutes National Forest and private lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry, according to the dispatch center.

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