Ken Heuser was evacuated from his home on Highway 5A Friday night. He visited the Princeton Evacuation Centre early Sunday morning with his grandsons Owen and Benjamin Kaiser.

‘I’m glad to be a Canadian today’

60 families evacuated Friday have registered at the reception centre

A fire evacuation centre at 8 o’clock on a Sunday morning resembles nothing more than a mid-priced hotel lobby, maybe slightly less organized.

There is someone in a uniform at the reception desk, and tables of fruit, muffins, coffee and water – a continental breakfast.

In Princeton B.C. it is also very quiet, with only a handful of volunteers, some local politicians and the occasional evacuee wandering in to grab a banana and ask for information.

The last update, 10:30 a.m. Sunday, put the Princeton fire at 1,500 hectares.

Ken Heuser, who evacuated from his home on Highway 5A with his wife Friday evening, was at the centre Sunday morning with his grandsons. His family is staying with Heuser’s daughter who lives in Princeton.

“We go out every day to Bedford Road to take a look and see where the clouds are.”

Heuser said they had several hours Friday to pack valuables like pictures and keepsakes into two vehicles, and drive safely to town.

The couple had not previously prepared an evacuation bag or checklist.

“No we talked about it, but we never did quite do it.”

Heuser said he has been overwhelmed by the kindness and assistance evacuees have received over the weekend.

“People in this community have come together. It’s a blessing to live here…I’m glad to be a Canadian today, that’s for sure.”

Nearly all of the residents of 60 families evacuated Friday have registered at the centre, located at Riverside, and all had family or motel accommodations last night according to Eric Gregson, Emergency Social Services volunteer and former Princeton fire chief.

One hundred and ten cots are being set up at the Princeton arena as a back up plan, he said.

“The arena has been designated as our group lodging centre. It is not open to the public. It is part of our plan to have that facility as required.”

Another 428 homes in the Missezula Lake, Erris and Jura areas remain on evacuation alert.

Gregson said the evacuation centre does not require more donations at this time, while people wanting to help are being asked to call the centre at 250-293-6672 so their names can be put on a list for donations or volunteer expertise in the coming days.

Just Posted

Car crash causes traffic delays along Highway 97

An accident has been reported on Highway 97 and Leathead Road

BC SPCA investigates Okanagan woman with prior animal abuse convictions

BC SPCA is investigating a property near Vernon

A mother’s warning: Man follows Peachland teen to her home from Kelowna

The teen’s mother is warning others about the incident

Residents of Oliver OK with 9 per cent tax increase

The increase is a result of the cost of policing being turned over to the town

Galchenyuk scores in OT as Coyotes edge Canucks 3-2

Vancouver manages single point as NHL playoff chase continues

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

Thieves steal bottles, mattress from recycle depot

Chase RCMP still investigating theft of tires, generator from commercial garage

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Regional district seeks $13 million to get rolling on Rail Trail

Federal grant would pay for a paved path from Sicamous to Armstrong

Cold War Cabaret offers song, slam poetry and sock puppets

Devon More returns to Shuswap with Berlin Waltz, March 16

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Most Read