City of Talent Oregon / News

Talent Wildfire News

Update 10/15/2020 at 10:45 a.m.

The Environmental Protection Agency is standing-up the first wildfire recovery response staging area in Central Point where workers will evaluate, organize, and consolidate materials recovered from burned homesites in the area.  The Response Staging Area will operate between 7:00 am and 7:00 pm daily for approximately two months.  

For more information, read the EPA Media Advisory.    


Update 9/30/2020 at 2:00 p.m.

The Rogue Credit Union Foundation is accepting applications for Southern Oregon Fire Relief funds.  These grants aim to provide financial support to organizations that are, or will be, providing fire relief efforts. 

For more information, read the Rogue Credit Union announcement.  


Update 9/22/2020 at 1:00 p.m.

The Talent City Council will hold a virtual town hall meeting on Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 6:00pm for residents and others to discuss the Almeda Fire and its aftermath.  In addition to the Council Council, city employees and representatives from Pacific Power, Avista, Recology, Rogue Valley Sewer Services and others will be available to answer questions.  Spanish language interpretation will be available for the meeting.  For more information, read the recent press release (in Spanish and English). 


Update 9/19/2020 at 2:07 p.m.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office is announcing that at 3:00 pm on Saturday, September 19, 2020, it will be lowering the evacuation status throughout the city of Talent to Level 1 (Get Ready). Fire-damaged areas remain extremely hazardous, and state and federal laws and regulations are in effect for any cleanup operations. For more information, please see www.jacksoncounty.org, and “Important Information for Residents and Business Owners” on this website.


Update 9/18/2020 at 12:45 p.m.

State Representative Pam Marsh has posted a new bulletin of news including recovery updates, FEMA assistance, and new resources.  


Update 9/16/2020 at 3:00 p.m.

The city's boil water advisory has been lifted. 


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 16, 2020 1:30 p.m.
Contact: Fray Crease, City Recorder
               541.535.1566
 
CITY OF TALENT ANNOUNCES LIFTING OF BOIL WATER ADVISORY
 
The City of Talent, Oregon announced at 1:30 p.m. today that the boil water advisory that has been in effect since last week has now been lifted. Residents should open water taps and flush water through potable water systems for approximately 10 minutes before starting to use water again for drinking and personal use. The flush requirement DOES NOT apply to irrigations systems or water systems not designed for personal use.
 
During the events of the Almeda fire that began on September 8, the City of Talent water system was depressurized due to a loss of power.  As a precaution, on September 10, the City released a boil water advisory to limit health risks caused by harmful bacteria that may have been present in the water supply while service was disrupted. Staff has been working to restore normal pressures in the system. 
 
The system has now been flushed and fully pressurized.  Repeated test results all show no bacteria or other harmful chemicals are present and the public is no longer advised to boil water. We continue to be under low water conditions until fall/winter rains returns. Please conserve and use water wisely.


Update 9/16/2020 at 11:20 a.m.

Talent Public Works staff have shut off the water to all of the homes in the burned areas.  Final water bills will be mailed in early October.  If you have a change or or updated mailing address, please email your new mailing address to ub@cityoftalent.org  


Update 9/16/2020 at 11:10 a.m.

The city's boil water advisory is still in effect. We will provide an update when the advisory is lifted.


Update 9/15/2020 - 10:18 a.m.

For fire related resources and FAQs please visit the Wildfire Resources page.  


Update 9/13/2020 - 12:00 p.m.

Pacific Power Press Release


Update 9/12/2020 – 2:15 p.m.

Recology Ashland made a garbage pick-up throughout the non-damaged sections of town today. It is also placing overflow containers at the following locations:

 

Market St by the museum

Schoolhouse Rd by the school

Charles Roberts Park Talent Ave By the police station

Kamerin Springs Park on Lithia Way

 

These containers are for NON-TOXIC HOUSEHOLD WASTE ONLY, NO ELECTRONICS, NO FIRE DAMAGE DEBRIS. Please note that fire damaged areas are considered a crime scene and are under the supervision of local law enforcement officials. Debris clean-up in damaged areas cannot begin until law enforcement gives the all-clear. These areas will likely be involved in missing persons searches over the coming days, so access to damaged areas may be delayed for some time. Those with questions about access can contact the Almeda Fire Escort at 541.613.5194.


Update 9/11/2020 – 10:00 p.m.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office has modified the evacuation zones in and around the city of Talent. Some portions of the city have been downgraded to Level 2, and residents are being allowed to return home. Those who do return should plan to be self-sufficient for non-perishable food and drinking water for at least 7 days. Limited water services have returned throughout the city but a water boil advisory is in effect. There is currently no electric power to the entire city. We are discouraging the use of candles and generators operating on combustible fuel because of the increased fire danger.

For more information on the evacuation downgrade, please see: https://jacksoncountyor.org/emergency/News/News-Information/category/evacuations-road-closures/almeda-fire-evacuation-zones-downgraded


Update 9/11/2020 – 8:00 a.m.

City employees and utility crews continue to work around-the-clock to restore essential city services and maintain public safety. Residents who chose not to evacuate or have returned to homes should be prepared to be self-sufficient for food and drinking water and to be without power for at least seven days.  We are discouraging the use of candles and private generators that use combustible fuel because of the increased fire danger.

When water service does return, the Oregon Health Authority advises boiling water for drinking and personal use. Please see the full water advisory post under City News on this website. Jackson County Emergency Services and the Red Cross are coordinating services for displaced persons. Please see the Jackson County Wildfire Emergency website at https://jacksoncountyor.org/emergency/News/Wildfires-Smoke

Access to the city is currently restricted. Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, Oregon Department of Transportation, and the State Fire Marshall have imposed these restrictions and are controlling highway and roadway entrances and exits. The city will be coordinating with these agencies to notify residents when restrictions have been lifted and it is safe to return. The city is working to identify and coordinate with local animal services and non-profit agencies to help with animal rescue and support for animals left in the city, and will have further information on that subject as it becomes available.

If you want to register with law enforcement agencies to report that you are safe, or to report a family member or friend who may be missing from the fire-impacted area, please use the links found a the bottom of this page:
https://jacksoncountyor.org/emergency/News/News-Information/category/evacuations-road-closures/evacuation-level-almeda-fire-south-medford

Please check back to this website for regular updates.

Emergency Council Meeting, Sept 10th @ 10AM - Agenda Link
Emergency Meeting - Audio Link


Update 9/10/2020 – 9:00 a.m.

The City of Talent and surrounding area remains closed to residents and others. Jackson County Sheriff's Office has asked everyone to curtail driving throughout the County as heavy traffic is impeding emergency workers and utility crews. Conditions remain dangerous throughout the impacted areas and public health and safety is the primary concern.

WHEN WATER SERVICE IS RESTORED, ALL DRINKING WATER WILL NEED TO BE BOILED FOR 5 MINUTES UNTIL IT IS SAFE TO DRINK.

 



PROCLAMATION OF THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF TALENT, OREGON
DECLARING THAT A STATE OF EMERGENCY EXISTS THROUGHOUT THE CITY DUE TO WILDFIRE
WHEREAS, Section 2.10.020 the Talent Municipal Code authorizes the Mayor to declare an emergency when a human-caused or natural event or circumstances causing or threatening to cause loss of life, injury to person or property, human suffering or financial loss has occurred, 
WHEREAS, the Mayor of Talent does hereby find: That conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property has occurred within Talent, caused by fire; which began on the 8th day of September, 2020 and; that these conditions are or are likely to persist for the foreseeable future.
NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY DECLARED that a local emergency now exists throughout the city boundaries of incorporated Talent, and;
IT IS FURTHER PROCLAIMED AND ORDERED that during the existence of the local emergency the powers, functions, and duties of the City Emergency Management Team under the City Manager of Talent, shall be those prescribed by state law, by Talent City Charter, section 2.10.050 of the Talent Municipal Code, and any resolutions pertaining thereto.
I make this emergency declaration effective noon on the 9th day of September 2020, to be confirmed and ratified by the City Council of the City of Talent. 
By:
_____________________________
Darby Ayers-Flood, Mayor of Talent

 


Update 9/9/2020 - 9:00 p.m.

First responders, City employees and utility crews continue to work throughout the city putting out fire hot spots,
protecting property, and working to bring utilities back on line. Conditions in the city remain dangerous with downed
and falling power lines, heavy smoke from potentially toxic sources, and unstable structures.

Residents are urged to remain outside the city until conditions can be stabilized. The city is without electric power and
water in most locations. City crews are working diligently to bring the water service back on line. When water service is
restored, there will be a boil advisory in effect for approximately one week. Electric power could take seven days or longer
to be restored.

The Red Cross has now opened a second refuge center at the fairgrounds in Grants Pass. Please contact your local
Red Cross or Jackson County Emergency Services for additional information on support services.

We will continue to update this page with new information.

 



Update 9/9/2020 - 8:38 a.m.

A devastating wildfire swept through the city of Talent on September 8, causing widespread property damage with loss of hundreds of structures. There is currently no information on injuries or loss of life. First responders, city employees and others worked tirelessly throughout the day and overnight to evacuate residents and protect property.

Talent is still very dangerous with numerous hot spots and downed power lines. Residents are are not being allowed in and should remain where they are currently sheltered until further notice. The Red Cross is offering emergency shelter and assistance at Jackson County Expo in Central Point. There may also be an emergency shelter at Ashland Middle School in Ashland.

Talent City Hall remains without power and there is limited ability for communications. We are working to get a temporary power source up and running as soon as possible. Please look to this webpage for additional information and also Jackson County Emergency Management at jacksoncountyor.org/emergency.