THE DALLES, OR -- More help is on the way for crews battling the Substation Fire near The Dalles. "As the Substation Fire is now considered to be the number one fire in the nation, we’ve received additional resources," says Stefan Meyers, with the Oregon State Fire Marshal's Office. As of Friday morning, the fire had grown to 70,000 acres and is 15% contained. It may have been arson caused. Oregon State Police ask anyone with information to contact them.
Fire managers are using several types of aircraft. Meyers says, "The benefit of this diverse air support is they can provide heavy drops on top of the canyons and the smaller aircraft can provide more precision drops in the canyons." He says more than 200 firefighters from 73 agencies are helping in the effort. Level 2 and Level 3 evacuation orders remain in place for 900 homes.
The fire has already turned deadly
, "Tragically, the fire has already claimed the life of 64-year-old John Ruby, of The Dalles," says Wasco County Sheriff Lane Magill. Ruby appears to have been using a tractor to create fire lines, when he was overcome by the fire.