PORTLAND, Ore. — Hot weather in the forecast this weekend has prompted Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue to issue a temporary outdoor burn ban for parts of multiple counties around the Portland metro area.
The burn ban started at noon on Friday, May 12 and impacts some areas in the following counties: Washington County, Clackamas County, Yamhill County and Multnomah County.
TVF&R anticipates the burn ban to be short-term, but didn't specify when it would be lifted. The agency said the burn ban will remain in place until weather patterns chance and there's no longer a high fire risk.
The burn ban prohibits people from backyard or open burning, including burning branches and other yard debris. It also means people are barred from agricultural burning, such as crops and field burning, and debris or controlled burning.
And to anyone who thinks it looks to green outside to burn: "I’ll say that yesterday we rolled on a burn pile that got out of control, quickly ran into other fuels — timber and slash that had been put on the ground," said Stefan Myers with TVF&R. "So this is what we see, as soon as it dries out we see behavior change and people get out to burn and it increases calls for us."
People can still use barbeque grills, smokers and other cooking appliances. The burn ban also doesn't prohibit small recreational fires including portable or permanent fire pits and camp fires.
Weekend heat advisory
The Willamette Valley and Southwest Washington will be under a heat advisory from Saturday afternoon through Sunday. The highest temperatures in the valley are forecast to be in the low to mid 90s.
The heat advisory also includes the Oregon coast, where highs are expected to be in the 70s and 80s. As of Friday morning, the Columbia River Gorge is not under an advisory.
TriMet warned Friday that high temperatures could cause MAX light rail service delays, particularly on the Green and Orange lines, although the agency said recent improvements to the overhead wires and counterweights should allow much of the system to operate normally at temperatures near 100 degrees.
Many people will be looking for ways to keep cool in the heat. Splash pads in parks are not currently open, but Portland Parks and Recreation has turned on some interactive fountains throughout the city. And if you're heading out, make sure you and your loved ones stay hydrated.
"Get your water in early, drink early in the morning and be really aware of the output of energy that you're doing in your day-to-day activity," advised Myers, who said dehydration and fatigue can set in quickly.
In Washington, the city of Vancouver has turned on water features in Esther Short Park and Vancouver Waterfront Park.
City libraries, community centers, malls and other public spaces with air conditioning are popular places for people to go to escape the heat.