Shelter Cove fire remains ‘potentially aggressive’

Power still out, evacuation order still in place in fire located approximately 17 kilometers northwest of downtown Kelowna.

  • Thu Jul 23rd, 2015 12:00pm
  • News

n the interest of public safety, the Evacuation Order for the Shelter Cove/Westside Road wildfire remains in effect for approximately 70 homes along Westside Road. This fire remains potentially aggressive and it is not yet safe for the Order to be changed.

Those properties within the Evacuation area are along Westside Road from Denison Road north to La Casa Resort (but not including La Casa), as well as the following roads: Denison Road, Shelter Cove Road and Deighton Road.

There are no Evacuation Alerts associated with this fire. Neither La Casa Resort nor Lake Okanagan Resort are under the Evacuation Order or Alert at this time.

BC Hydro has provided new information regarding the status of electrical service. Hydro delivered diesel generating units to West Kelowna this morning to provide power, on a temporary basis, to about 1,000 customers who have been without electricity since Monday due to the wildfire. BC Hydro crews are currently working on integrating the units into the power system and hope to have the units running on Friday.

Hydro says the temporary units will provide continuous electricity to the customers that are receiving power on a rotational basis and the La Casa subdivision. Customers directly in the fire zone will remain without power until BC Hydro is permitted access to the area impacted by the fire.

Until the generating units are running, BC Hydro will continue to provide power on a rotating basis to customers. There are three rotations, each six hours long and providing power to 300 customers at a time. If system conditions permit, BC Hydro will add additional customers to these rotations.

BC Hydro is asking impacted customers to minimize their power usage until the wildfire has been contained and we are able to fully repair our system. Please plug in and turn on only what is necessary.

The BC Wildfire Service continues to fight this blaze with firefighters and heavy equipment on the ground supported by four helicopters.

The fire area is located approximately 17 kilometers northwest of downtown Kelowna. Both the City of Kelowna and City of West Kelowna are located well away from the actual fire scene.

Residents outside the Evacuation Area affected by the rotating electrical service may wish to consider fire-related health and safety information provided by Interior Health. The agency says if the power has been out in your home, the food in your fridge or freezer may no longer be safe to eat. Interior Health suggests ‘When in doubt, throw it out’ and you should not take any chances with the safety of your food. For more specific information related to health and safety due to the Shelter Cove/Westside Road fire visit the IH website: http://www.interiorhealth.ca/AboutUs/MediaCentre/NewsReleases/Documents/Westside%20Rd%20power%20outage%20and%20evacuations%20-%20food%20and%20water%20safety%20tips.pdf.

Residents serviced by either the Traders Cove or North Westside waste transfer stations can dispose of any items of concern during the normal operating hours. The North Westside facility is open Monday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. The Traders Cove station is open Wednesday from 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

RCMP security continues today both on land and the water. Okanagan Lake boaters are encouraged to continue to watch for helicopters and skimmers that may be working this fire and stay well away from the Evacuation area.

The Emergency Support Services (ESS) Reception Centre in the Westside Lions Community Hall at 2466 Main Street in West Kelowna is open to provide assistance to those residents that are on Evacuation Order. Emergency Management BC has approved an extension of accommodation for those registered for up to 72 hours, should that be needed.

ESS advises that if and when the Evacuation Order is lifted and affected residents are able to return home, the referral forms that have been issued will become null and void, regardless of the expiry date.

Westside Road remains closed between Cinnabar Creek and La Casa Resort. Westside Road remains open in both directions from the north to La Casa Resort and from the south to the closure at Cinnabar Creek. For the latest road information, visit the Drive BC website at drivebc.ca

For the most up-to-date information on the fire, visit cordemergency.ca.