Firefighters in Washington State have been working on the Diamond Creek fire since it was discovered on July 23. (Photo courtesy U.S. Forest Service)

Diamond Creek fire growth slowed

B.C. Wildfire continues to assess growth of U.S. fire in Canada

The portion of the Diamond Creek fire intruding into Canada is holding at about 2,030 hectares, according to the B.C. Wildfire Service.

“There has been no significant growth on the Canadian portion of the fire in the last 24 hours,” said Jody Lucius, a fire information officer.

The fire has been burning in Washington state since late July and crossed over into B.C. back country on Tuesday evening, burning near Border Lake, about 70 kilometres west of Osoyoos. It grew quickly from a small extension, reaching its current size of 2,030 hectares by Friday. It has burned some 21,000 hectares on the U.S. side of the border.

Related: Massive US fire crosses into Canada

At present, there are no suppression efforts, but the BCWS is flying over it twice a day to assess its growth and behaviour.

“Right now, we don’t have crews and equipment on that fire,” said Lucius, noting that this fire was sprung on B.C. nearly full-grown, rather than growing from a small fire. “We are still working to assess it and develop some plans to address it.

“It is a little different approach we are working through as far as assessments go but we are flying over that fire twice a day to keep an eye on it and map it, understand what is occurring so if swift action needs to be taken, it can be.”

Lucius said she is not aware of any structures that are threatened by the Diamond Creek fire, but a values assessment is underway that includes homes and properties as well as resources that might be affected.

A map showing the restriction area in the South Okanagan for the Diamond Creek fire.
A large area around Cathedral Park, which has already been evacuated, has been placed under a provincial area restriction.

“People are required to stay out of that area unless they are involved with fire suppression activities,” said Lucius.

Under the restriction order, people must not remain in or enter the Diamond Creek Wildfire restricted area without written authorization of an official unless they are travelling to or from their principal residence that is not under an evacuation order; accessing a secondary residence or recreational property or travelling in an official capacity.

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

Related: Hot and dry long weekend concerns BC Wildfire crews