Although smoke is now marking the days in the Greater Trail region, it is smoke from international fires and not from fires burning in nearby West Kootenay climes that are causing the problem, says the Southeast Fire Centre’s spokesperson.
Karlie Shaughnessy said smoke visible in the air in Greater Trail has been linked to wildfires in Russia, as well as wildfires located in the U.S.A.
“Although there are several active fires within the Southeast, we do not have any significant fires that would produce the amount of smoke being seen across the (region),” she said.
A 1.5-hectare blaze 10 kilometres northeast of Trail, Nelson’s Five Mile Creek fire, the Keen Creek fire west of Kaslo and the Skimmerhorn fire near Lister are currently burning in the region.
In the past week the Southeast Fire Centre has responded to 47 new wildfires, 43 of which were lightning caused. Since April 1, the centre has responded to 95 fires, 34 per cent of which were human caused.
The closest fire to Greater Trail now sits at 1.5 ha., with 80 per cent of it now contained. Twenty personnel and one helicopter are onsite.
The Five Mile Creek Fire, nine kilometres northeast of Nelson, is 1.6 ha. and is 75 per cent contained. Thirteen personnel and two helicopters continue to battle the fire which is located near an older fire from 2003.
The Skimmer Horn Mountain Fire, east of Lister, is 56 ha. and is 45 per cent contained.
This fire is located on steep, challenging terrain and 30 personnel are onsite supported by five helicopters.
The fire west of Kaslo, in the Keen Creek area, is 10 ha. in size and is now 100 per cent contained and is being mopped‐up and patrolled by 16 personnel.
The fire danger rating is moderate to high across most of the centre with pockets of extreme in the Arrow, Kootenay Lake, Boundary, Invermere and Cranbrook zones.