Several lightning strikes last evening has resulted in 14 new wildfires in the West Kootenay area of southeast BC. The fire danger rating in most of the Southeast Fire Centre is currently “high”, with some areas rated “extreme” in the Cranbrook, Arrow and Kootenay Lake fire zones.
Teamwork Media TV Inc. – Nelson BC Canada 2:PM Aug 31, 2016 – As many as 14 new fires have firefighters scrambling after a lightning storm hit the area last evening. The storm passed through quickly with minimal rain. At this point none of the fires are threatening any homes but the forest service has not provided an update on the situation as all fires are “new” and none of the fires are of significant size.
Three fires have started near Kuskonook; two at Twin Bays and one at Sanka Creek. Two fires in Slocan Park; one at Wolverton Creek and one at Waverton Creek. Two in Coffee Creek south of Ainsworth, one on Robson Ridge near Castlegar, One between Ymir and Salmo and two wildfires near Champion Lakes close to Fruitvale.
The forest service has ground and air personal battling the blazes.
UPDATE: Lightning sparks numerous wildfires in southeast B.C.
CASTLEGAR BC UPDATE 3:38 PM AUG 31 – BC Wildfire Service firefighters are currently responding to numerous lightning-caused wildfires in the Southeast Fire Centre, within the Arrow Fire Zone and Kootenay Lake Fire Zone.
Many of these fires are highly visible in the area, but none of them is currently threatening any structures or communities.
* Three separate fires are burning about 12 kilometres south of Boswell in the Sanca area, east of Kootenay Lake. These fires are all 0.5 hectares or smaller. Airtankers, a helicopter and initial attack crews are working on site.
* Initial attack crews are responding to two small wildfires about five kilometres north of Queens Bay in the Coffee Creek region, west of Kootenay Lake.
* Twenty-five BC Wildfire Service personnel are responding to a 0.2-hectare fire south of Champion Lakes Provincial Park, a 0.4-hectare fire on Mount Heinze (east of Birchbank) and a 0.5-hectare wildfire on Keystone Mountain (northwest of Salmo).
* A 0.7-hectare wildfire west of Slocan Park in the Waverton Creek area is in steep, difficult terrain. A helicopter and initial attack crew are en route.
Since April 1, the BC Wildfire Service has responded to 174 wildfires in the Southeast Fire Centre, 51 of which were human-caused.
The fire danger rating in most of the Southeast Fire Centre is currently “high”, with some areas rated “extreme” in the Cranbrook, Arrow and Kootenay Lake fire zones.
The Southeast Fire Centre extends from the U.S. border in the south to the Mica Dam in the north and from the Okanagan Highlands and Monashee Mountains in the west to the B.C.-Alberta border in the east. This includes the Selkirk and Rocky Mountain natural resource districts.
For information on air quality (including smoke forecasts for Western Canada), visit the BC Air Quality website: www.bcairquality.ca/bluesky/west/index.html
To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call *5555 on a cellphone or 1 800 663-5555 toll-free. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: www.bcwildfire.ca
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