The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) is advising with likely no rain expected for the region, emergency operations remain activated at Level 1 to support wildfire response.
“While conditions remain dry and the fire danger rating remains moderate to high across the RDKB,” began Chris Marsh, the RDKB’s emergency program manager. “Cooler temperatures and some precipitation has helped keep fire activity minimal and has allowed fire crews to gain control of area wildfires.”
The Horns Mountain (Santa Rosa) fire was the only “Wildfire of Note” listed within the RDKB on Aug. 29.
With temperatures slow to warm, the BC Wildfire Service had the fire fully guarded early Wednesday, and reported the wildfire would be classified as “under control” by the evening.
The RDKB rescinded its evacuation alert to 33 properties near the Santa Rosa fire at 10 a.m., under the advisement of the BC Wildfire Service.
Current statistics show the Santa Rosa fire as 100 per cent guarded and 50 per cent contained on the Canadian side of the border. The fire jumped the Washington State line into the rural area, south of Rossland, around Aug. 12.
The lightning-caused wildfire has consumed 2,255 hectares in the U.S. and 377 hectares in Canada.
Five pieces of heavy equipment and 57 firefighters were deployed to battle the blaze, which is still not fully contained on the American side.
The fire danger rating for most of the Southeast Fire Centre, which the RDKB is located within, remains high. That means forest fuels are very dry and the fire risk is serious. New fires may start easily, burn vigorously, and challenge fire suppression efforts. Campfires are banned and the public is advised to practice extreme caution with in any forest activities.
Seasonal temperatures and sun are forecast for part of this weekend, though fire danger could ease up early next week with a potential transition to wetter conditions, according to the regional district’s latest wildfire update.
However on Wednesday, the province formally extended B.C.’s wildfire-driven state of emergency through the end of the day on Sept. 12.
“The state of emergency declaration will continue to apply to the entire province,” the release read. “This ensures that all needed resources can be delivered in a co-ordinated response to the wildfire situation and continue to ensure public safety, which remains the provincial government’s top priority.”
The province declared a state of emergency on Aug. 15.
As of Aug. 29, 534 wildfires were burning across B.C., with 34 evacuation orders affecting approximately 3,200 people, plus 53 evacuation alerts impacting approximately 21,800 people.
The state of emergency gives agencies, such as Emergency Management BC, the fire commissioner, the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, and the RCMP, the authority to take every action necessary to fight the wildfires and protect residents and their communities.