More than 1K inmates evacuated from Ore. prison due to wildfires
Officials didn't say where they were relocating inmates, but said they would be moved to another state corrections facility
By Jayati Ramakrishnan
WILSONVILLE, Ore. — The Oregon state women’s prison will evacuate more than 1,000 inmates due to threats posed by uncontrolled wildfires, the Department of Corrections announced on Thursday.
The Coffee Creek Correctional Facility in Wilsonville has started evacuating all 1,303 people in custody. The facility is in potential danger as the Riverside and Beachie Creek fires, which are burning in Clackamas and Marion counties, threaten to merge.
Department of Corrections spokesperson Jennifer Black said officials won’t immediately say where they were relocating inmates to protect the safety of inmates and staff, but she said they were being moved to another state corrections facility.
The facility serves as the intake point for all state prisons, and is the only prison where women are housed.
Three other Oregon prisons were evacuated earlier in the week. The Mill Creek, Santiam and Oregon State Correctional Institutions moved a total of 1,400 inmates to the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem on Tuesday. Those prisons were also evacuated due to threats from the Beachie Creek Fire.
Thousands have been evacuated in recent days, as Oregon wildfires have burned 500 square miles and caused widespread devastation along the Interstate 5 corridor and on the coast.
©2020 The Oregonian (Portland, Ore.)