Lightning strikes hit and cause fires

(Jonathan Brines/News 10).

Southern Oregon and northern California saw an interesting change in weather today, which caused fires.

According to the National Weather Service office in Medford, there was a recorded 113 cloud to ground lightning strikes in the nine counties they cover spread across southern Oregon and northern California.

Two fires were started from the lightning strikes.

The 'Little Applegate Fire' off of Applegate Road in Jackson County is currently 13 acres and growing. An air tanker is making retardant drops and multiple helicopters are dropping water just before 7 p.m. Sunday.

According to the Jackson County Sheriff's Office and the Rogue Valley Fire Chief's Association, one house has been evacuated and an additional three houses are under a "Level 1" evacuation notice.

All residents have been notified.

Fire crews are making great progress and are said to be in mop-up operations.

The 'Yale West Fire' located south across Applegate Road, is estimated to be about one acre and is wet lined at this time.

The Oregon Department of Forestry is teaming up with the Applegate Valley Fire District and the Bureau of Land Management to fight the fires.

Fire crews are working with hand tools on the ground to get the fires completely lined and contained.

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