June 20, 2018 12:11 am
Updated: June 20, 2018 12:49 am

Fire ignites in the forest above Wreck Beach at UBC

Firefighters are working to extinguish a fire that ignited in a tree about 600 feet above Wreck Beach at the University of British Columbia on June 19, 2018.

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UBC science student Michelle Huang has a regular habit of going down to Wreck Beach just before sunset.

Normally, she’s there to see a golden sun lower into the west. But she saw something very different on her trip down during a workout on Tuesday.

Coverage of wildfires on Globalnews.ca:

This time, she spotted a fire in the trees above the beach.

Huang was on her way down to the beach when someone told her not to go there because a fire had flared up.

She didn’t see or smell anything, so she kept on her way.

Then, once on the beach, she saw “one giant tree” on fire, with numerous personnel trying to keep the flames — and the scene — under control.

“By the time I came down to the beach, it was already big,” she told Global News.

Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services assistant chief Kevin Wilson confirmed that personnel were tackling a blaze located about 600 feet above Wreck Beach and approximately 1,000 feet down from NW Marine Drive.

“It’s in the middle of ‘no man’s land,'” he said, describing the difficulty of accessing the fire.

As of 9:40 p.m., the fire had been burning for about 40 minutes to an hour and was sending embers off of it.

Wilson said firefighters had laid hose lines from fire hydrants on NW Marine Drive and a fire boat from down below, and would have water on it shortly.

They also blocked traffic to ensure no one drove over their hoses.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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