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Skaha Creek wildfire: Penticton Indian Band issues evacuation alert

Click to play video: 'Skaha Creek wildfire: Penticton Indian Band issues evacuation alert' Skaha Creek wildfire: Penticton Indian Band issues evacuation alert
The cooler temperatures and higher relative humidity is helping firefighters make good progress on the 200-hectare Skaha Creek wildfire west of Penticton. As Shelby Thom reports, while an evacuation alert remains in place for 240 properties on Penticton Indian Band land, officials say the threat to homes is diminishing by the day – Sep 1, 2021

The Penticton Indian Band issued an evacuation alert on Monday for approximately 240 properties because of the nearby Skaha Creek wildfire.

Located approximately six kilometres southwest of Penticton, the blaze is estimated at 212 hectares after starting out at an estimated third of a hectare when it was initially discovered on Saturday.

The fire isn’t currently threatening any structures, according to the BC Wildfire Service, but the Penticton Indian Band (PIB) authorized an evacuation alert on Monday for properties in Skaha Hills, Riva Ridge and Holidays Hills RV Resort, plus the PIB’s Lower Village south of Shingle Creek.

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A map showing the evacuation alert area is available on the City of Penticton website.

In related news, the City of Penticton activated its emergency operations centre due to the wildfire’s proximity.

A map showing the area affected by the Penticton Indian Band’s evacuation alert. City of Penticton

“We’re taking steps to prepare and plan in the event there is a change in the behaviour of the Skaha Creek Wildfire and to be ready to support the Penticton Indian Band as needed,” said emergency operations centre director Donny Van Dyk.

The city noted there are no evacuation alerts or orders being considered for the City of Penticton at this time.

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New wildfire near Penticton causing concern – Aug 30, 2021

According to the BC Wildfire Service, the fire stayed high on the slopes on Monday, adding there was no significant growth as of this morning.

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Weather conditions for Tuesday were expected to be cooler with increasing clouds, with BC Wildfire stating “this slight downturn in weather will help crews make progress on the containment of the Skaha Creek wildfire.”

Still, it noted that steep and rocky terrain is presenting a challenge to ground crews, though heavy equipment is being utilized where possible and hand-dug guards will be used where machines cannot safely operate.

BC Wildfire also said a small planned burn may take place Tuesday, on the east side, to bring the fire safely to the guard where crews can action it.

It said increased smoke will be visible on the east side of the fire, closest to Penticton, if the planned ignition operation occurs.

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Kelowna Weather Forecast: August 30 – Aug 30, 2021

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