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Wildfire Resiliency & Hazard Mitigation

View of Detroit, Oregon in September 2020 during the wildfires. Source: ODOT
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Wildfire Resiliency & Hazard Mitigation

Intensifying drought and storms, increasing temperatures, and the unprecedented Oregon wildfires last fall accentuate the importance of cultivating disaster resiliency and emergency preparedness in our communities. This webpage includes resources for residents of the Mid-Willamette Valley, including survivors of the 2020 Labor Day fires, to understand natural disaster risks and prepare for future disasters.

2020 Labor Day Fires

Following an unusually dry and hot summer, an extreme wind event on September 7th, 2020, caused existing wildfires in the Opal Creek Wilderness and Warm Springs Reservation to rapidly spread out of control through the North Santiam Canyon. The fires killed five people and destroyed over 1,500 structures, most severely impacting the cities of Detroit and Gates and causing additional damage to Idanha, Mill City, and Lyons.

For more background about the 2020 Labor Day fires in the Santiam Canyon and elsewhere, see Oregon State University’s After the Fire Storymap.

For information on Marion County’s efforts to assist residents recovering from the 2020 wildfires.

Santiam Canyon Recovery Study

Following the 2020 Labor Day fires, the Oregon chapter of the American Planning Association (OAPA) reached out to the MWVCOG and Marion County with an offer to support recovery and rebuilding in the Santiam Canyon through OAPA’s Community Assistance Planning Program (CAPP). CAPP organizes experienced professionals willing to volunteer free planning assistance to local governments and community-based organizations in under-resourced communities. In partnership with the MWVCOG and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the OAPA CAPP team for the Santiam Canyon has undertaken some of the research groundwork needed to assist longer-term community decisions, project identification, and a resilient recovery. More background information on the Santiam Canyon Recover Study is available (PDF).


A directory of organizations and individuals involved in the Santiam Canyon wildfire recovery is available.

Resources and Tools

The increasing risk of natural hazards such as wildfires, flooding, earthquakes, and landslides to Oregonians has become clear in the past several years. Below, find a collection of resources to help prepare yourself, your home, and your community for natural disaster. Resources include financial programs (grants and loans), informational materials, maps and documents, and organizations to contact for additional help.

Santiam Canyon Resident Resource Toolkit


More Resources

Wildfire Resources and Preparedness Wellness Toolkit (PDF) from the Oregon Wildfire Outreach Program

Updated: 20221209