Fire Alert

New 80-acre wildfire encircled SE of Bend

Fire near China Hat has dozer, hand line

BEND, Ore. - A new, apparently human-caused wildfire Thursday burned about 80 acres northeast of China Hat, south of Bend, before crews got a line around it, officials said.

The fire was reported by a private citizen around 7:30 a.m., and by the end of the day, crews had a bulldozer line around the south end of the blaze and a hand line around the north end, said Jada Altman at the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center.

Resources on the fire included a 20-person hand crew, four engines and two water-dropping helicopters dipping from East Lake, officials said, adding that the fire would be staffed overnight.

The cause of the fire was under investigation, but Altman said it was believed to be human-caused.

The new fire broke out as crews work to finish containment of the more than month-old, nearly 27,000-acre Pole Creek Fire and also as the first in a series of prescribed burns began, one west of La Pine and another near Haystack Reservoir.

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