Wildfire News & Resources With a record-breaking number of large fires raging out of control across the state, we do not yet know the extent of the loss of life and property. With the combination of the pandemic conditions of the past seven months and now the wildfires that erupted this past week, it is likely that countless Oregonians will be living and working in uncertainty for many weeks, if not months. AGC is here to support you and the construction industry in whatever way we can. Wildfire Safety Information Oregon OSHA: Employers Urged to Protect Workers by Avoiding Outdoor Work, Following Best Practices as Harmful Air Quality Persists [Sept 16] State workplace and public health officials are urging employers to stop or delay outdoor work activity where they can and take other reasonable steps to protect workers when air quality reaches the “unhealthy” zone, or worse. Employers are responsible for providing safe and healthy workplaces, and recognizing and addressing hazards to workers—including unsafe air quality that is expected to continue through the weekend, say officials at Oregon Occupational Safety and Health (Oregon OSHA) and Oregon Health Authority (OHA). Read more. Wildfire Smoke Exposure and Construction Workers [Sept 14] The entire region is dealing with severe air quality issues from the wildfire smoke, and hazardous conditions have been occurring for several days and will continue for several more. Outdoor construction workers are particularly at risk, as they typically are exposed for at least an eight-hour shift and do not always have the ability to get out of the smoke, even if only for a few minutes. Read more or print the document. Other Wildfire Information Indoor Air Filters Available [Sept 16] Watts Heating & Cooling in Gladstone has air filters available. Call or text 503-786-2858 for information. Filters can be picked up or delivered for a fee. Information on How to Vote for Oregonians Displaced by Wildfires [Sept 15] Secretary of State Bev Clarno issued the following statement in response to the wildfires and to ensure all displaced Oregonians are able to receive their ballot and vote this November. “The families and communities affected by the devastating wildfires across Oregon are in my thoughts and prayers. Our team at Secretary of State stands ready to help both in the immediate response and long-term recovery efforts to come. For any Oregonians displaced from their home and concerned about voting in the General Election this November, rest assured we have a plan and are working closely with local election officials to ensure you can receive your ballot, vote, and make your voices heard.” For frequently asked questions, visit oregonvotes.gov/fires. Frequently Asked Questions How can I receive my ballot if I have been displaced by wildfires? Ballots will start being mailed October 14. If you know an address where you will be able to receive mail then, you can add a temporary mailing address at oregonvotes.gov/myvote. If you want, you may also use this paper form to provide us with a temporary address. You can pick up all of your mail (including ballots once they are mailed) at the post office that serves your permanent residence address. Contact your county election office after October 1 for additional options they may have for pickup. Find your county election office here. If I submit a change of address through USPS, will my ballot be forwarded to the new address? No. Ballots are unable to be forwarded. It is one of the security features of our system. You must inform election officials of your temporary address using one of the methods above in order to have your ballot sent there. Do I need to register to vote from my temporary address? No. You do not need to re-register to vote if you are living somewhere temporarily because you have been displaced by wildfires. You just need to let us know where to mail your ballot by one of the methods above. Will I be able to vote on the local measures where my permanent address is located, even if I am temporarily living outside that area? Yes. The ballot you receive will contain the contests for your residential address, not your temporary mailing address. What if my mailbox was destroyed? If mail cannot be delivered to your home or mailbox, it will be held at your local post office and you can pick it up there. Governor Kate Brown Requests Presidential Disaster Declaration for the Ongoing Wildfires in Oregon [Sept 15] Governor Kate Brown today requested a Presidential Disaster Declaration for the ongoing wildfires in Oregon. The request follows a federal emergency declaration that was granted on September 10, and will bring much needed resources to Oregon’s response and recovery efforts. “Oregon is strong. Oregon is resilient. But to fight fires of this scale, we need all the help we can get,” said Governor Brown. “I am grateful for this federal support, which will help us to both address urgent disaster response needs on the ground, and move towards recovery.” The request includes operational response support, such as additional communications resources, damage assessment teams, search and rescue (SAR) support, debris management, as well as shelter and medical assistance. Individual assistance for the counties and tribes was also included in the request. The letter can be found here and the supporting document can be found here. Five Insurance Tips for Wildfire Recovery [Sept 14] The Oregon Division of Financial Regulation has five tips for homeowners and renters who have evacuated or been affected by fire, smoke, and ash damage. Call your insurance company to check your policy. Let your company know if you have evacuated. Coverage is typically available for fire, smoke, and ash damage to your home and personal property. Ask about your auto coverage, too. You need comprehensive coverage on your auto policy to cover fire, smoke, and ash damage, no matter where your vehicle is located at time of the loss. If you had to evacuate, save your receipts and, when it is safe, let your insurance company know you evacuated. Your homeowners policy may pay for expenses such as lodging, food, and even pet boarding due to a mandatory evacuation. Be sure to check with your insurance company to confirm your specific coverage. If you have not evacuated and it is safe to do so, make a quick home inventory by taking photos or video of each room in your home. Pay close attention to what is on the walls and in drawers and closets. Don’t forget storage areas such as the attic and garage. Check your insurance company’s website for an app or checklist that will help. Or use the Insure U Home Inventory Checklist. If your personal belongings are damaged, the insurance company will request a list of items that are damaged or destroyed. Take some time to work on your home inventory list now. Look through your photos and videos to help recall personal items. Be sure to look for smaller items, such as jewelry. To the best of your ability, write down the age, original cost, and replacement cost of each item. Following these tips will help save you money, time, and stress during a wildfire. For more information on preparing for a wildfire, visit the division’s wildfire page. Oregonians that have been forced to evacuate their homes because of area wildfires should contact their insurance companies as soon as possible to let them know they have evacuated and discuss next steps. If you still have questions or concerns, the division’s Advocacy Team is here to help. Call the team at 888-877-4894 (toll-free) or visit the website. Resources Current Fire and Evacuation Information County-Specific Resources Check out your county website for updated maps, evacuation information (including evacuation levels and zones), and other emergency resources. We also recommend you sign up for alerts here. Clackamas County Jackson County Lane County Marion County Multnomah County Washington County Oregon Wildfire Resources (State of Oregon) – View the page to see all links. County News/Alerts What to Pack Emergency Lodging Prescription Medication Discount Program Fires & Hotspots Map Road Conditions/Closures Air Quality Index Wildfire Prevention Wildfire Smoke & Health Insurance Resources Maps of Major Oregon and Washington Fires: The Northwest Interagency Coordination Center, which coordinates firefighters across the region, shares this map of major fires in the Pacific Northwest. Northwest Fires, Oregon Evacuations: Northwest Interagency Coordination Center (NWCC), Oregon’s RAPTOR Map shows wildfires across the U.S. West and evacuation zones within the state. Enter an address to quickly zoom in on a specific location. It’s slow to load, so prepare for a brief wait before the map appears. Who to Follow Many counties, state agencies, law enforcement, and emergency services, as well as local news and media outlets are using social media to broadcast information and updates immediately. Oregon Office of Emergency Management Red Cross Cascades Oregon Department of Forestry Oregon State Fire Marshal Oregon Smoke Info Ready.gov Local Law Enforcement and Fire Districts Local News Outlets Donations If you would like to add to this list, especially for local organizations and efforts, please contact Karla Holland at the AGC office. Red Cross Cascades Region KGW Northwest Response Fund The American Red Cross has teamed up with KGW and KING-TV in Seattle to form the Northwest Response Fund, dedicated to helping those affected by the wildfires raging in Oregon and Washington. Donations will go toward 2020 wildfire relief wherever it is needed. Oregon Business Community Wildfire Relief Fund The Oregon Business Council, Oregon Business & Industry, and the Oregon State Chamber of Commerce have joined to raise funds to support Oregonians who have been displaced by this tragedy. Donations will go to OBI’s 501(c)(3) charitable foundation, and they are tax deductible. OBI’s foundation has made an initial commitment that will cover all overhead costs, so every dollar donated will go to communities in need. Oregon Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (Oregon VOAD) VOAD provides a list of verified disaster relief organizations, including Team Rubicon, Salvation Army, and Northwest Baptist Disaster Relief. Rogue Valley Recovers Currently focused on the fires burning in Jackson and Josephine Counties, the primary focus is now response. As initial event chaos and distress begins to shift, this site will move with the community need to long term recovery efforts. Southern Oregon Strong Fire Relief Fund NewsWatch 12 is partnering with the American Red Cross to support those impacted by the wildfires burning in Oregon. Donations support the work the Red Cross is providing to families that have been affected by the wildfires in Oregon. Your support helps the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters. Your generous donations make it possible for the Red Cross to provide food, water, showers, first aid and emotional support to our neighbors in need. United Way United Way of Jackson County (HQ in Medford, Ore.) United Way of Lane County (HQ in Eugene/ Springfield, Ore.) United Way of Linn, Benton & Lincoln Counties (HQ in Albany, Ore.) United Way of the Mid-Willamette Valley (HQ in Salem, Ore.) United Way of Southwestern Oregon (HQ in Coos Bay, Ore.) Volunteer Opportunities If you would like to add to this list, especially for local organizations and efforts, please contact Karla Holland at the AGC office. American Red Cross Oregon Blood Banks Rogue Valley Preparedness and Recovery Hub Salvation Army is looking for volunteers to help distribute boxed meals at evacuee locations: Oregon Convention Center, Oregon State Fairgrounds, Jackson County Expo Center. In addition, they are providing meals in Linn, Douglas, Clackamas, and Lincoln Counties. In Jackson County, the Salvation Army HOPE House in Medford is currently sheltering evacuees, providing meals, and is expecting more evacuees. Contact Lisa Cole. Members in the News Behind the firelines, the race to save Scotts Mills Oregonlive, September 14 Great job AGC members K&E Excavating (Kerry Kuenzi and Scott Kuenzi), and D&T Excavation!