EUGENE, Ore. -- Evacuees from the Holiday Farm fire were told on Friday to leave the Fairfield Inn & Suites on Franklin Boulevard, as well as the Graduate Hotel on E. 6th Avenue.
People had until noon to get out.
Evacuees were given vouchers and placed at local hotels after they were forced to flee the massive wildfire. But hotels have said they must honor previous reservations made by other guests.
According to Travel Lane County, there has been some confusion and miscommunication between the Red Cross, which places evacuees in hotels, and the hotels themselves. Spokesperson Andy Verbora said that it isn't clear what the procedure is when the short-term contracts hotels sign come to a close.
Additionally, Verbora said there have been increased reports of rooms being damaged by unruly guests or pets. Some also report local homeless people arriving at Red Cross centers and not being screened out, using resources and hotel rooms that were meant for evacuees.
The Red Cress released the following statement: "We do everything we can to avoid having to relocate people from one hotel sheltering location to another, but sometimes it’s unavoidable due to previously scheduled reservations. We work diligently with our hotel partners to reserve available hotel rooms, but in disaster situations rooms are not always available for the duration needed. Which means sometimes we have to make the difficult decision to move evacuees to different locations or housing options that may include shelters."
The Red Cross said they've been working with local and state partners to secure all the rooms necessary to ensure everyone who has been in a hotel will have one Friday tonight.
Graduate Eugene General Manager Jason Williams issued the following statement:
"We have partnered with the American Red Cross to provide a safe and comforting place for evacuees during this devastating time. In the days and weeks to come we’re working through how we will continue to accommodate these individuals, in addition to the guests who previously booked stays during these dates. We are currently accommodating 100 rooms (for evacuees) and remain committed to taking care of as many people as our hotel allows."
This comes just a day after the Holiday Inn Express on Franklin Boulevard extended the stay of evacuees through Oct. 3. Prior to that, the Red Cross had sent a notice to evacuees the night prior that they would have to leave on Thursday.