By Kiera Morgan:
Monday afternoon Newport fire crews responded to a report of a grass fire at South Beach State Park. According to Newport Fire Chief Rob Murphy upon their arrival there was smoke coming from the trees about 150-yards southwest of the day use parking lot. The fire was rapidly spreading south due to northwest winds.
Newport fire called in additional units to help from Seal Rock fire and Toledo fire. Depoe Bay fire was called to help cover Newport, while the firefighters were on scene. Firefighters deployed hose lines and attacked the fire, which took about 25-minutes to get put completely out. No homes were impacted, but Chief Murphy said there was concern that if they did not get the fire out quickly it could spread toward the Southshore housing development.
The fire burned just under an acre of dunes and beach grass. The cause of the fire is still under investigation. Murphy added that this is a concern as we have more people who are expected on the coast as the eclipse approaches. Fires are not allowed right now outside of designated campground areas. During this dry time of year fires can quickly get out of control with the wind and spread. For more information regarding recreational fires contact your local area fire department.