BC Wildfire Crews are working to extinguish fires left in the wake of the thunderstorm which rolled over the Kamloops Fire Centre on Thursday evening.
An information officer from the Kamloops Fire Centre said that three firefighters from a rappel crew, who use helicopters to access fires in remote areas, are trying to establish a fire guard around a small fire burning in dense undergrowth near Adams Lake. The fire was first reported in the wake of the thunderstorm but could not be located by ground crews or a patrol flight because relatively damp conditions slowed its growth.
It took until Saturday to locate the fire, when the rappel crew roped in and got to work; the crew spent the night on the mountain and continued their suppression effort the following morning. They are creating a fire guard in the thick layer of undergrowth and fallen trees around the fire while also felling danger trees to ensure the area is safe for them.
The fire’s size is estimated at less than 0.1 of a hectare.
The Kamloops Fire Centre asks the public to continue reporting fresh smoke and other fire behaviour even from fires they know have already been reported, as fires left smouldering from damp conditions can flare back up when the forest dries.
The cause of another fire near Kamloops remains uncertain. Suppression efforts are ongoing on the fire burning in the Beresford Lakes area south of Kamloops after it was reported on the afternoon of June 15. A crew of six firefighters worked on the blaze that day and three returned June 16, along with BC Hydro personnel, to assure it is safe to work in proximity to nearby power lines.
The fire is currently being held and is not expected to grow beyond its current boundaries. The fire centre representative noted that any changes to the fire’s size on the wildfire service’s interactive map will likely be the result of crews getting a better estimate of the fire’s size.
Wildfire crews were also called to a vehicle on fire along Highway 3A near Friday Creek, but they lacked the personal protective equipment to work on structure and vehicle fires and so simply watched the fire to ensure it did not spread to nearby grass and trees.
The public is asked to immediately call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free, or *5555 on a cell phone to report wildfires, smoke columns and violations of wildfire regulations in British Columbia.