Crews respond to two fires in Slocan Valley

Southeast Fire Centre responded to two lightning-caused fires on Thursday. - Thinkstock/Getty image
Southeast Fire Centre responded to two lightning-caused fires on Thursday.
— image credit: Thinkstock/Getty image

The Southeast Fire Centre has responded to two lightning-caused fires east of Highway 6 in the Slocan Valley.

While the fires are highly visible, due to their proximity to Highway 6 and local communities, there is currently no threat to any structures or communities.

The Enterprise Creek fire is 1.5 km east of Highway 6 and 8.5 km south of Silverton. Multiple airtanker groups and helicopters worked on this fire throughout the day and late into the evening on Thursday, July 17. The next day, three helicopters were supporting a 20-person unit crew that established pump sites and is containing the fire, which is estimated at 10 hectares.

The Monument Creek fire is 10 km east of Highway 6 and 11.5 kilometres southeast of Slocan City. Helicopters supported 18 firefighters who are working to contain this fire. Airtanker groups and helicopters worked late into the evening on Thursday to slow its rate of spread. This wildfire is estimated at 3.5 hectares.

These fires are not the source of the haze and smoke that's currently visible throughout the region. Smoke has drifted into the West Kootenay area from much larger wildfires in the Okanagan Valley.

Crews have actively responded to 27 naturally occurring wildfires in the past week and have also had to respond to seven fires that were person-caused and therefore preventable. Person-caused wildfires divert firefighting resources from responding to other incidents. The Wildfire Management Branch asks the public and industry operators to exercise extreme caution in this period of increased fire danger.

For information on air quality, as well as smoke forecasts for Western Canada, visit the BC Air Quality website:

To report a wildfire or unattended campfire, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

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