OREGON - Several timber companies have shut down public access to their forests because of fire concerns.
Those companies are Seneca, Lone Rock Resources, Giustina Resources, Campbell Global, and Giustina Land & Timber Company. Around 600,000 acres of forests are owned between them.
"Due to drought conditions, and above-average temperatures, Oregon is already experiencing a bad fire season," the companies said in a statement. "The number of fires so far this year is already 1.5 times higher than the 10-year average, and the acreage affected has been more than four times greater than the 10-year average."
Fires have burned nearly 20,000 acres of forest across the state over the past few months.
Hot temperatures, dry air, and high winds are fueling the fires. An unusually dry spring has made matters worse. A near-record amount of dead fallen trees are acting as fuel.
“This historic heatwave is smashing records. It is important for us to proactively close our lands down to the public for the safety of our timberlands, firefighters, and all Oregonians,” said Casey Roscoe, Seneca’s senior marketing VP.
The companies also cited a high frequency of human-caused fires.
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