There are 33 firefighters with heavy equipment and three helicopters working the fire. (B.C. Wildfire Service)

There are 33 firefighters with heavy equipment and three helicopters working the fire. (B.C. Wildfire Service)

Harrop fire grows to 1,500 hectares

The fires at Glacier Creek and Rapid Creek have also grown in size.

  • Aug. 4, 2017 4:00 p.m.

The Harrop fire had grown to 1,500 hectares as of noon on Thursday, with crews focusing on the south flank of the blaze.

There are 33 firefighters with heavy equipment and three helicopters working the fire, according to a report from the Southeast Fire Centre.

The Harrop Creek forest service road meanwhile is closed.

The RCMP has not responded to Black Press calls about the investigation into the recent theft of fire pumps and hoses. The incident caused a barrage of anger on social media.

“I was aghast,” regional director Ramona Faust said, “because you would need to know that road. You would have to know where you were going.”

Faust said the community is less alarmed about the fire than it was when it first started.

“I think people are settling down now,” she said, “when they realize the fire is heading in the opposite direction, it is heading back toward the burned out area of the park.”

She recently sent out a pre-evacuation plan that she said will eventually have more detail depending on how the fire develops.

“A lot of people are interested in the movement of livestock. We have about 800 chickens, several herds of cattle of ten or more, pigs, turkeys. It is an agricultural area. And horses, at one point there were 62 horses.”

She said the community forest manager, Erik Leslie, has been giving daily reports.

The Glacier Creek fire, east of Duncan Lake, covered 400 hectares as of noon on Thursday. The Duncan-Glacier Creek forest service road and the White-Middle Fork Forest Service roads are both closed.

The Rapid Creek fire north of Lardeau in the Poplar Creek area has reached an area of 500 hectares, with three B.C. Wildfire personnel on site as well as sprinklers ready to protect buildings. The evacuation alert announced last week for Poplar Creek is still in effect.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development and BC Wildfire Service announced Friday that the use of any off-road vehicle for recreation purposes is prohibited on Crown land as of noon Friday. The prohibition is in effect for the Southeast Fire Centre, which includes Castlegar, Cariboo Fire Centre and Kamloops Fire Centre.

All on-highway vehicles, such as jeeps or trucks, should remain on designated roads.

The prohibition is meant to prevent human-caused wildifres and protect public safety.

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