Crews are battling a grass fire off of Highway 97 towards Falkland 15 km outside of Vernon.

Crews are battling a grass fire off of Highway 97 towards Falkland 15 km outside of Vernon.

Fire sparked off Highway 97

Grass fire sparked off Highway 97 Friday afternoon just 15 kilometres outside of Vernon, on way to Falkland

A grass fire has been sparked off Highway 97 in the Round Lake Road area just 15 kilometres outside of Vernon.

The Okanagan Indian Band and Armstrong Spallumcheen fire departments were on scene, along with B.C. Wildfire crews and an air bomber is being deployed to try and stop the fire in its tracks.

“It looks like it is just in the grass right now,” said Kelsey Winter, fire information officer, Friday at 3 p.m.

“It is .5 hectares in size and it is burning rank two or three so it’s a moderate rate of spread.”

Along with a hot and dry forecast, there is concerns about another force of Mother Nature.

“It’s very windy out there today,” said Winter.

But she is hopeful the fire can be extinguished quickly.

“We’re sending a lot of resources.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but Winter points out that it burning just off the highway.

“There’s wasn’t lightning in that area today.”

So far this year there have been 234 fires in the Kamloops region, with 28 of those in Vernon, representing six hectares burned. Almost half of those were human-caused.

“Last year at this time you were at 17,” said Winter.

Vernon Morning Star

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