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Keremeos Creek wildfire now held, 28 days after ignition

Keremeos Creek Wildfire is now classified as held. Courtesy: BC Wildfire

The Keremeos Creek wildfire, 21 kilometres southwest of Penticton, B.C., is now being classified as held, just 28 days after it first started.

BC Wildfire announced Friday that the fire which is still mapped at a sizeable 7,0178 hectares, would not likely spread beyond predetermined boundaries under forecast conditions.

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“Crews continue to patrol control lines, conduct fuel management activities and mop-up,” the wildfire service said in a statement.

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“Wildfires in the South Okanagan continue to burn at a low intensity through the fall until winter and smoke may be visible within the perimeter for several weeks.”

Read more: B.C.’s wildfire season likely to extend weeks due to dry conditions: official

There are still burning stumps and single trees within the fire’s perimeter. Fire burning at a safe distance within the existing perimeter will be allowed to burn and self-extinguish, while hot spots or single trees being consumed do not threaten further spread at a sufficient distance from control lines.

There are currently 40 fires burning in the Kamloops Fire Centre, which encompasses the Keremeos Creek wildfire. That number is 10 more than two days ago and many of which were sparked by lightning storms.

Provincially, there are 1,276 wildfires burning and 376 of those were started in the last seven days. Last week, the wildfire service warned that the season wasn’t coming to a quick close, despite its slow start.

“Typically, we start to see a winddown in our fire season the first week of September,”  Andrea Heath, a BC Wildfire Service provincial information officer, said Aug. 21.

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“Our weather modeling is saying that our wildfire season will continue until at least mid-September. We’ll likely see it extended a couple of weeks further (than usual).”

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Officials are attributing the wildfire season extension to persisting hot and dry weather.

To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

Click to play video: 'Wildfire risk persists across most of B.C.'
Wildfire risk persists across most of B.C.

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