UPDATE: Evacuation alert issued for wilderness north of Okanagan Connector Highway
UPDATE 10 P.M. – An Evacuation Alert has been issued for a large area of wilderness north of the Okanagan Connector where a fast moving wildfire is burning.
The Thompson-Nicola Regional District (TNRD) said those camping or staying at properties in the remote area should be prepared to leave at a moments notice.
“You will be given as much advance warning as possible prior to the evacuation; however you may receive limited notice due to changing conditions,” the notice said.
Pennask Lake is on the west boundary of the alert area, Mellin Lake on the north boundary, Barton Lake on the northeast boundary and Eileen Lake on the southeast boundary.
The TNRD suggests preparing to leave by doing these things:
1. Locate all family members and be prepared to evacuate your residence and property to an
identified safe reception center.
2. Gather essential items such as medications, eyeglasses, valuable papers (insurance),
photographs and immediate care needs for dependants.
3. Prepare to move any disabled persons and children.
4. Collect pets and pet needs.
5. If possible, move livestock to a safe area
UPDATE 9 P.M. – The Gottfriedsen Mountain wildfire has exploded to more than 400 hectares, driven by strong winds, hot temperatures and low humidity, according to the BC Wildfire Service.
Night operations on the blaze will continue with a crew of seven wildland firefighters and a bulldozer, information officer Brenna Ward said.
The flames are moving from cut-block to cut-block looking for fuel on a plateau, Ward said.
The wildfire is growing in all directions but is mainly burning to the northeast, still about 8 km from the Okanagan Connector/ Highway 97C.
Lightning is the suspected cause of the blaze, she said.
Ward said dry lightning is in the forecast Friday and Saturday, which could escalate the fire situation in the region.
ORIGINAL STORY –
A new and fast moving wildfire is burning approximately 24 kilometres west of West Kelowna.
According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, no structures are being threatened by the “aggressive” fire, which is burning on Gottfriedsen Mountain.
It is expected to continue growing into Thursday night.
At 5:30 p.m., the blaze is said to be more than 100 hectares and is displaying rank 3 to 5 fire behaviour.
A fire burning at rank 5 means trees are going up in flames like matches.
Air support is on the fire, according to information officer Brenna Ward, including air tankers and water-bucketing helicopters.
A crew of wildland firefighters is also assisting in the ground, she said.
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