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I-5 open after Grants Pass fire

A pair of wildfires along the Interstate 5 corridor between Grants Pass and Rogue River were swiftly corralled, but backed up northbound freeway traffic for several hours Friday.

Simultaneous wind-driven wildfires near Grants Pass kept crews of roughly 100 personnel busy Friday afternoon, according to Oregon Department of Forestry reports. One fire just south of Grants Pass near milepost 54 reached about 15 acres, while another one near milepost 51 grew to a tenth of an acre.

The milepost 54 fire prompted delays on northbound I-5 beginning at 2:53 p.m., a mile short of the south Grants Pass exit, according to Oregon Department of Transportation reports, beginning with a closed slow lane and temporary stops for retardant drops.

Multiple ground and aerial resources were dispatched, according to ODF. The fire size, initially estimated at around 50 acres, was later reported as closer to 10 to 15 acres; however, a plume of smoke was visible from as far away as Medford.

All lanes were reopened by 7:47 p.m., according to ODOT.

ODF photo. Firefighters are responding to a new start near I-5 and MP 54 in Grants Pass. The fire is estimated to be 50+ acres in size. Multiple agencies are sending several resources on the ground to help catch this quick-moving, wind driven fire. Aerial resources are also on the way.{ }