Just before 4 p.m. today, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue and Hillsboro Fire & Rescue firefighters were dispatched to reports of a brush fire on Unger Road, west of Hillsboro Highway.
First incoming crews confirmed that they had a working grass fire that had spread to a utility trailer and three vehicles and was making its way toward a chicken coop and a residence. The incident was immediately upgraded to a first alarm, bringing in additional resources to protect threatened structures and to ensure rapid containment. Due to the lack of fire hydrants in the area, water tenders shuttled water to the brush rigs and engines.
Firefighters were able to extinguish the bulk of the fire in less than 10 minutes from their arrival, keeping it contained to under an acre. They stopped the flames from spreading to the house and the chicken coop, but the fire did damage three unused vehicles and a utility trailer.
Firefighters and Metro West Ambulance evaluated one patient for smoke inhalation, but the patient was released on scene and refused transport.
The TVF&R investigator confirmed that the fire was caused by a lawnmower that was being used to cut grass.
This brush fire comes on the heels of a red flag warning that was issued by the National Weather Service today, effective until 7 p.m. This warning is in place due to low humidity, warm temperatures and wind conditions, which increases the chance of rapid fire spread.
TVF&R advises the following tips during red flag warnings:
• Properly dispose of smoking materials.
• Avoid recreational fires.
• If you use your barbecue, move it away from your house and other flammable materials and monitor it at all times.
• Trim back vegetation that is growing near your house.
TVF&R’s service area is also under a burn ban. For more details, go to https://www.tvfr.com/132/Outdoor-Burning