Photo: governmentofbc.maps

Crew, helicopters deployed for China Creek fire

The 22-hectare fire was discovered Monday, lightning is the suspected cause.

A ground crew and two bucketing helicopters were deployed to fight the China Creek fire.

The fire is burning approximately six kilometres northwest of Genelle and about seven kilometres west of Blueberry.

The 22-hectare fire, which was discovered Monday, is burning at an elevation of 1600 metres. Lightning is the suspected cause.

“The RDKB EOC is monitoring this developing situation and will advise the public if concerns develop,” said a Southeast Fire Centre press release.

“At this time, the fire is burning on a ridge top and is not currently threatening communities.”

Meanwhile, as the blanket of smoke lingered over Trail, the Air Quality Health Index remains at 10+ – rated a very high health risk. It is forecasted to drop to 8 on Thursday, which still remains in the high level.

However, wildfire smoke is a temporary irritant, not as bad as long-term exposure to smog in big cities such as Beijing, says Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer for B.C.

Henry joined the provincial government’s wildfire update report Wednesday to offer practical advice for people avoiding smoke that has settled over much of the province. She said staying indoors and limiting exertion during heavy smoke periods is better for most people than wearing a mask.

Dust masks are not effective against the fine particulates generated by forest fires, and heavier masks may further restrict breathing for people with respiratory ailments, Henry said. B.C. hospitals are reporting a significant increase in visits to emergency by people with chronic illnesses.

B.C. had 16 new fire starts Tuesday, bringing the number of active fires to 563. Some rain is expected in northern and southeastern B.C. later this week, with more extensive rain possible by Sunday to help ease conditions, said Ryan Turcotte of the B.C. Wildfire Service.

Considering the heightened wildfire activity experienced in the Southeast Fire Centre this past month, the progress that has been made on these fires is significant. Crews continue to work extremely hard toward suppressing the remaining fires.

To better understand some of the response strategies used in wildfire management, please refer to the definitions below:

Full Response – Sustained

* This refers to a wildfire that requires aggressive, sustained suppression action until the fire is declared out. Such a wildfire is not expected to “be held” in the first 72 hours after it is detected.

Full Response – Modified

* A modified response fire is managed using a combination of suppression techniques. These include direct and indirect attack, and monitoring the fire to steer, contain or otherwise manage fire activity within a predetermined perimeter, so that costs and/or damage are minimized and/or benefits from the fire are maximized.

Full Response – Monitor-Only

* This is a wildfire that is observed and assessed to determine an appropriate response that will minimize social disruption and/or significant impacts on values and resources, while also achieving beneficial ecological, economic or resource management objectives.

To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: http://www.bcwildfire.ca

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