Crews making progress on Southern Oregon wildfire

Crews making progress on Southern Oregon wildfire
A Rural/Metro fire fighter digs a line just ahead of a burning field next to Powell Creek Road Friday afternoon, July 19, 2013 in Williams, Ore. (AP Photo/The Daily Courier, Timothy Bullard)

Firefighters have established a line around a wildfire near the rural Southern Oregon community of Williams on Saturday and are focusing on pushing it away from homes.

Crews "made excellent progress" on Saturday, the Oregon State Fire Marshal said.

The Pacifica fire threatened 150 homes. Seventy-five of them were evacuated on Friday, but residents have been permitted to return. One home, six outbuildings and one vehicle were lost before crews arrived in the area, the fire marshal said.

The fire is burning on about 500 acres, or three-quarters of a square mile. More than 200 firefighters worked the fire Saturday.

Oregon Forestry Department spokesman Brian Ballou says firefighters are trying to push 150 feet into the fire line on all sides.

Ballou says that if the fire is still within the line on Sunday evening, the situation is "looking pretty good."

Gov. John Kitzhaber authorized the state fire marshal to send additional firefighters and equipment.

“The fire near Williams continues to spread and threaten both life and property. I have directed all available state resources to help contain its growth,” said Governor Kitzhaber. “My priority is to ensure that this community has every resource necessary to fight this fire and protect the citizens of Josephine County.”

It's unknown what caused the fire.