Wildfire cameras to keep eye on problem areas

BEND, Ore. — A pair of webcams installed above Lake Chinook will give Central Oregon its first fire lookout cameras.

The high-tech images will be accessible to local firefighters on their laptops or phones.

The Bend Bulletin reported the cameras provide a 360-degree view of the 40-square-mile district, as well as the edges of the Crooked River National Grasslands, Deschutes National Forest and Warm Springs Indian Reservation.

The Oregon Department of Forestry has plans for eight webcam lookouts in Grant, Hood River, Wasco and Wheeler counties. At least a couple could be up and running by the next fire season.

It’s part of a move to electronic monitoring of potential problem areas in fire season, a more cost-effective option than paying people to do the job.

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