Fire Protection of Forests and Vegetation

ORS 477.001

As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:


“Additional fire hazard” means a hazard that has been determined to exist by the forester pursuant to ORS 477.580 (Determination of additional fire hazards).


“Board” means the State Board of Forestry.


“Campfire” means any open fire used for cooking, personal warmth, lighting, ceremonial or aesthetic purposes that is hand built and that is not associated with any debris disposal activities.


“Department” means the State Forestry Department.


“District” means a forest protection district organized under ORS 477.225 (Establishment and change of forest protection districts).


“Every reasonable effort” means the use of the reasonably available personnel and equipment under the supervision and control of an owner or operator, which are needed and effective to fight the fire in the judgment of the forester and which can be brought to bear on the fire in a timely fashion.


“Fire season” means a period designated pursuant to ORS 477.505 (State Forester may declare fire season in district).


“Fiscal year” means the period beginning on July 1 of any year and ending on June 30 of the next year.


“Forestland” means any woodland, brushland, timberland, grazing land or clearing that, during any time of the year, contains enough forest growth, slashing or vegetation to constitute, in the judgment of the forester, a fire hazard, regardless of how the land is zoned or taxed. As used in this subsection, “clearing” means any grassland, improved area, lake, meadow, mechanically or manually cleared area, road, rocky area, stream or other similar forestland opening that is surrounded by or contiguous to forestland and that has been included in areas classified as forestland under ORS 526.305 (Definitions for ORS 526.305 to 526.370) to 526.370 (Seeding agreements as condition of supervision of burning on forestlands).


“Forest patrol assessment” means the costs levied and assessed under ORS 477.270 (Budgeted cost of forester to be lien).


“Forest protective association” or “association” means an association, group or agency composed of owners of forestlands, organized for the purpose of protecting such forestlands from fire.


“Forest resource” means the various types of vegetation normally growing on Oregon’s forestland, the associated harvested products and the associated residue, including but not limited to brush, grass, logs, saplings, seedlings, trees and slashing.


“Forester” means the State Forester or authorized representative.


“Governing body” of a county means the county court or board of county commissioners.


“Grazing land” is defined by ORS 477.205 (Definitions for ORS 477.205 to 477.281).


“Open fire” means any outdoor fire that occurs in such a manner that combustion air is not effectively controlled and combustion products are not effectively vented through a stack or chimney.


“Operation” means any industrial activity, any development or any improvement on forestland inside or within one-eighth of one mile of a forest protection district, including but not limited to the harvesting of forest tree species, the clearing of land, the use of power-driven machinery and the use of fire, excluding, however, the culture and harvesting of agricultural crops.


“Operation area” means the area on which an operation is being conducted and the area on which operation activity may have resulted in the ignition of a fire.


“Operation in progress” means that time when workers are on an operation area for the purpose of an operation, including the period of time when fire watches are required to be on the operation area pursuant to ORS 477.665 (Fire watch service).


“Operator” means any person who, either personally or through employees, agents, representatives or contractors, is carrying on or has carried on any operation.


“Owner” means an individual, a combination of individuals, a partnership, a corporation, the State of Oregon or a political subdivision thereof, or an association of any nature that holds an ownership interest in land.


“Political subdivision” includes, but is not limited to, counties, cities and special districts.


“Rangeland” is defined by ORS 477.315 (Definitions for ORS 477.315 to 477.325).


“Routine road maintenance” is defined by ORS 477.625 (Permit to use fire or power-driven machinery).


“Side” means any single unit of a logging operation employing power-driven machinery.


“Slashing” means the forest debris or refuse on any forestland resulting from the cutting, killing, pruning, severing or removal of brush, trees or other forest growth.


“State Forester” means the person appointed State Forester pursuant to ORS 526.031 (State Forester) or the person serving in the position on an interim or delegated basis.


“Summit of the Cascade Mountains” is considered to be a line beginning at the intersection of the northern boundary of the State of Oregon and the western boundary of Wasco County; thence southerly along the western boundaries of Wasco, Jefferson, Deschutes and Klamath Counties to the southern boundary of the State of Oregon.


“Timberland” is defined by ORS 477.205 (Definitions for ORS 477.205 to 477.281).


“Warden” means a fire warden appointed under ORS 477.355 (Fire wardens generally). [1959 c.363 §2 (enacted in lieu of 477.002); 1961 c.603 §1; 1965 c.253 §44; 1967 c.429 §34; 1973 c.46 §1; 1983 c.22 §1; 1985 c.759 §32; 1997 c.274 §1; 1999 c.59 §156; 1999 c.355 §2; 2003 c.54 §3]

Atty. Gen. Opinions

When rural fire protection district may levy taxes on property within a forest protection district, (1972) Vol 36, p 71


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021