Community meeting held in Hood River to address Eagle Creek Fire - KPTV - FOX 12

Community meeting held in Hood River to address Eagle Creek Fire

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HOOD RIVER, OR (KPTV) -

It was a packed house in Hood River Thursday night for a community meeting addressing the Eagle Creek Fire.

There’s a lot of unease in Hood River as people hold their breath, waiting to find out if they will need to evacuate. People who live there say all eyes are on the wind.

Forecasters from the National Weather Service at the meeting had good news, they said humidity and lower temperatures are on the way.

Fire crews said that’s a huge improvement since Monday, when the fire made a fast run, moving 14 miles in less than 16 hours. Crews said that fire behavior put the fire at the top of the list – making it the nation’s number one fire priority.

“We’ve been working hard to dispel rumors, I understand there’s a lot of unease in the community,” said Hood River County Sheriff, Matt English.

The gym at Hood River Valley High School was packed Thursday night, many people said they were feeling overwhelmed by uncertainty and fear.

“There’s always a feeling in the air, everybody felt a little uneasy I think. Our kids have had to stay inside for the first two days of school and the AC wasn’t working,” said Carolyn, a teacher in Hood River.

“I’m really nervous about the smoke it’s really bad it feels like the fire is in our house the smoke is so thick,” said Toni Casey, a Hood County resident.

Throughout the meeting the community was reassured from fire crews. Sheriff English said a comprehensive plan is in place if the people of Hood River need to evacuate. 

“The meteorologist really put things in perspective, everyone zoned in on what was happening with the weather,” said Carolyn.

Loud cheers erupted from the crowd, when the meteorologist from the National Weather Service said humidity and rain was on its way.

A major shift in weather and in attitude in Hood River. That was clear when FOX 12 crews left the meeting, only to be greeted by people celebrating the falling rain.

“It’s raining, it’s raining finally! I hope it lasts, but anything is better than nothing!” cheers from folks outside.

Fire officials tell FOX 12 that 850 firefighters are in Oregon for the fires in the Gorge, representing more than 70 agencies across the state.

Crews also say an additional Type 1 team is coming in this week.

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