Police ask boating public to stay out of way of water bombers

One boat on Premier Lake Tuesday was in way of bombers trying to refill

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Kimberley RCMP are asking the public to be respectful of those doing their best to control wildfires, and not get in their way.

A perfect case in point was an incident on Premier Lake on Tuesday, where a boat was not getting out of the way of water bombers trying to refill.

“The Southeast Fire Centre called us for assistance,” said Sgt. Chris Newel of the Kimberley RCMP. “The CO service took a boat and a Cranbrook member and were out there within 90 minutes. One boat in particular was causing concern. Our understanding was he was just not getting out of the way. There are sirens on the aircraft, just like on any emergency vehicle and the boat was not getting out of the way.”

Newel just shakes his head at the behaviour.

“You know there’s a fire. You see the planes. Just get out of the way. These planes are very impressive. They have a nine minute turn around from filling to dropping water on the fire. They can do nine drops an hour, that’s a lot of water. If people stay out of their way. Hopefully people will get the message.”

Newel says banning boats from using the lake is not the call of the RCMP. Like any decision banning people from the backcountry that would have to come from the government.

As for the campfire ban, Newel says the Kimberley Detachment is getting plenty of calls and they follow up on all of them

“We have had the odd one, where there was a campfire, but usually it turns out to be those gas barbecue things. We are getting lots of calls thought. Everyone is on edge. Everyone is concerned.”

carolyn.grant@kimberleybulletin.com

Kimberley Daily Bulletin

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