Worst may be over for ‘B.C.’s worst fire season’

Cooling temps and the declining risk of dry lightning have lead to reduced fire activity.

While 12 wildfires continue to burn in the Monashee Complex — which ranges from south of Highway 6 to Three Valley Gap — officials say the worst may be over.

Related: Worst may almost be over for 2018 B.C. wildfire season

Now ranked the worst wildfire season in B.C.’s history with nearly 1.3 million hectares of forest burned as of Aug. 29, cooling temperatures and the declining risk of dry lightning have lead to reduced fire activity.

The Monashee Complex began with 27 wildfires blazing. Of the 12 that continue to burn, the Mabel Creek fire located approximately 47 kilometres east of Salmon Arm remains the largest at 1,370 hectares.

“A new guard is being constructed at the end of the sprinkler line and the sprinkler line is being reworked,” the Service said of their efforts to quell the blaze.

Previous closures, including to the Mabel Lake Forest Service Road closure and Cottonwood Beach, Cascades Falls and Johnston Bay recreation site, have since been lifted. However, area restrictions for crown land in the vicinity of both the Mabel Creek wildfire and the Sugar Mountain wildfire, burning at 394 hectares an estimated 59 kilometres east of Vernon, remain active and will remain in place until Sept. 15 or until they are rescinded.

Meanwhile, the Harris Creek wildfire southeast of Lumby is now considered held.

Related: Harris Creek wildfire now held

The BC Wildfire Service said Sunday afternoon that they no longer expect the wildfire to grow beyond its current perimeter.

The Harris Creek fire is an estimated 858 hectares in size. There are currently 78 firefighters and three pieces of heavy equipment battling the blaze.

“Crews will continue to direct attack on the flanks of the fire and blackline the remaining unworked sections along the east excursion,” the Service said. “Canadian Armed Forces will continue to mop-up and patrol.”

There are two helicopters assigned to the entire Monashee Complex that will be used interchangeably between wildfires depending on the need. An IMT is in place managing the response operations to the complex of wildfires.

Despite cooling temperatures and reduced fire activity across the province, Environment Canada said people should remain wary of smoke.

Special air quality statements were released for the North Okanagan Monday, Sept. 3. Smoke is expected to return heavily Wednesday, Sept. 5 with northern winds blowing smoke from the fires in Washington State.

Air quality is expected to be at a moderate level in the North Okanagan this week and children, the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions should take precautions.

Temperatures are expected to hover around 20C, hitting a high of 28C on Thursday.


@VernonNews
newstips@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Scammer targeting elderly in Kelowna with broken-down vehicle story

A door to door scammer is in Kelowna, targeting seniors according to Kelowna RCMP

Kelowna’s definitive Christmas market list

We’ve prepared a list of every market in the Central Okanagan

Okanagan volunteers reflect on building classrooms in Nepal

Through the charity Her International, the volunteer group built four classrooms

Cool Arts’ double header event features Lake Country artist

Celebration of artist Mark Mercer’s work to run alongside community art night in Kelowna.

Kelowna rallies around father of five after cancer diagnosis

Fundraisers are planned throughout November

Weekend weather update: Crisp and sunny

This weekend will see lots of sunshine and below season temperatures for the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen.

Canada’s health system commendable overall but barriers to care remain: UN

The United Nations says Canada’s health care system is “commendable” overall but vulnerable groups still face barriers to quality care.

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

$224.5 million announced for Highway 1 bridge replacement in Sicamous

Transportation Minister Claire Trevena says bridge option will be announced next month

Kelly Ellard’s boyfriend has statutory release revoked

Darwin Duane Dorozan had several parole infractions that found him ‘unmanageable’

Accident north of Vernon involves SUV and semi truck

Minor delays reported in Highway 97 crash

Ontario driver rolls car in Okanagan

Crash near Vernon follows reports of erratic driving

Doctor’s note shouldn’t be required to prove you’re sick: poll

70% of Canadians oppose allowing employers to make you get a sick note

German-born B.C. man warns against a ‘yes’ vote on proportional representation

Agassiz realtor Freddy Marks says PR in his home country shows party elites can never be voted out

Most Read