In a media release Friday afternoon, the Southeast Fire Centre reports personnel have been responding to 43 active wildfires throughout East and West Kootenays.
These fires include the following:
West Kootenay region
- As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, the 100-hectare wildfire in the McCormick Creek area (20 kilometres southwest of Salmo) had 37 personnel, four helicopters and six pieces of heavy equipment working on it. Ground crews were also being supported by airtankers as visibility allowed. Smoke from this fire will be more visible in the afternoons during peak temperatures. As a precautionary measure, the Regional District of Central Kootenay issued an evacuation alert for 21 residents and an evacuation order for two properties. More information about the alert and order can be found at: www.rdck.ca
- As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, 110 firefighting personnel (including an 11-person incident management team from Australia) were working on the Harrop Creek wildfire, which is 10 kilometres south of the communities of Harrop and Procter. This fire currently covers about 2,136 hectares and crews are being supported by four helicopters and three pieces of heavy equipment.
- The 250-hectare fire about five kilometres east of Galena Bay is burning in steep and difficult terrain. As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, 34 firefighting personnel, two helicopters and one piece of heavy equipment were working to establish a fire guard on the west flank of the fire. This fire is highly visible from the Galena Bay area and Highway 23. Details about an evacuation alert that's in place for this fire is available on the Columbia Shuswap Regional District website at: www.csrd.bc.ca
East Kootenay region
- The Island Pond wildfire, about 17 kilometres southeast of Canal Flats, has not experienced much growth over the last several days and is about 75% contained. As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, it covered about 1,073 hectares. Eighty-eight firefighting personnel were on site working to establish a guard around this fire, supported by eight pieces of heavy equipment and one helicopter.
- The Lamb Creek wildfire is about five kilometres west of Moyie. As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, it covered about 12 hectares and was 30% contained. Crews are being assisted by heavy equipment and air support as they continue to build a guard around this fire.
- The Moyie Mountain wildfire is about four kilometres east of Moyie Lake Park. As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, it covered about four hectares and it is currently being held. Crews were on site and continuing to build a fire guard with the aid of heavy equipment.
- The White River wildfire is about 47 kilometres northeast of Canal Flats. As of the afternoon of Aug. 11, it covered about 1,550 hectares. This fire is being closely monitored and crews are prepared to conduct burnoff operations when site conditions allow.
- There have been eight new, lightning-caused fires in the East Kootenays since Aug. 10, 2017. None of these fires is threatening any communities or structures. The majority of these eight fires are smaller than one hectare. Of these eight fires, two have been extinguished, two are being held, one is under control and crews are working on the rest in priority sequence. One of these fires is about three kilometres east of the border of Top of the World Provincial Park and, as of the afternoon of Aug. 11, covered about 10 hectares. This fire is burning at a high elevation and is not threatening any communities or structures. BC Wildfire Service personnel are closely monitoring this fire.
The Southeast Fire Centre would like to remind the public of the open burning (including campfires) and recreational off-road vehicle use are banned throughout the region.
The Southeast Fire Centre extends from the U.S. border in the south to the Mica Dam in the north and from the Okanagan Highlands and Monashee Mountains in the west to the B.C.-Alberta border in the east. The Southeast Fire Centre includes the Selkirk Natural Resource District and the Rocky Mountain Natural Resource District.
To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call *5555 on a cellphone or 1 800 663-5555 toll-free. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: www.bcwildfire.ca
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