August 3, 2014 2:06 pm
Updated: August 3, 2014 2:28 pm

GALLERY: Incredible lightning storm hits Kamloops region

Louie Luce

VANCOUVER – Residents of Kamloops and Williams Lake were treated to an incredible lightning storm on Saturday night.

Viewers in Kamloops sent us photos of the lightning that started when the sun was setting and continued for a few hours.

However, the storm caused a number of issues for fire crews, and sparked fires in Westsyde, Rayleigh,and on Tk’emlups band land.

Fire information officer Kayla Pepper says since Saturday they have seen 12 new fires start in the Kamloops region, with 10 of those being caused by lightning.

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“A number of lightning caused fires and fortunately they’ve all stayed spot sized at this time,” she says, “however we do expect more lightning to come through the area and even in the heat of the day today we could see the lightning strikes from yesterday causing more fires.”

Pepper says lightning strikes can smolder for up to a month and if conditions are ideal then those strikes could start fires later and spread into the nearby forest.

“Within our centre we are pre-positioning our crews into areas where we think lightning will occur, just so our crews can have quicker response time,” adds Pepper.

She says the public also helped to report fires and smoke on Saturday night. A campfire ban is in place throughout most of the region as well.

If you see a wildfire, please report it to the Wildfire Management Branch at 1-800-663-5555 or call *5555 toll free on most cellular networks.

Thunderstorms are expected to continue today over the Central Interior, the Cariboo, into the Columbia and Kootenay region.

Check out our gallery of the lightning from Kamloops on Saturday night:

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