Fire crews in northwest B.C. are struggling to get control over two wildfires after strong winds swept through the region this week.
The BC Wildfire Service said in an information bulletin that an evacuation alert from last week has been expanded to include Buchan Creek, Fantail Lake and Fantail River, due to a fire burning 40 kilometres west of Atlin, by Tagish Lake.
There are 17 firefighters, supported by helicopters, are working to extinguish the blaze, which is believed to have sparked after a lightning storm in the area in early July.
Although the fire has grown, wildfire officials said, the estimated size of the blaze has decreased from 1,400 hectares to 890 hectares due to more accurate mapping.
A second fire in the region, around 50 kilometres west of Telegraph Creek, has also expanded due to wind.
The out-of-control Barrington River fire is now roughly 4,600 hectares in size. Fortunately, the wildfire service said the large blaze is not threatening any structures or communities, including Telegraph Creek and Glenora – the site of last year’s 121,000-hectare Alkali Lake wildfire.
Large-scale sprinklers were installed earlier this month at a fish camp at Tahltan Lake located about halfway between Telegraph Creek and the fire.
In the Okanagan, where B.C.’s most threatening wildfire is burning at Eagle Bluff, firefighters have made good progress on the 2,632-hectare blaze. The fire is 10 kilometres northeast of Oliver.
UPDATE: 147 #BCWildfire firefighters made progress on the #EagleBluff wildfire today. 47 personnel will continue to respond overnight. Updates on the postponed planned ignition will be provided once conditions are reevaluated in the morning. More info: https://t.co/3ngFWJxBX3 pic.twitter.com/ztFtkG9q04
— BC Wildfire Service (@BCGovFireInfo) August 15, 2019
An area restriction is in place, meaning that people are not allowed to enter the area without authorization, or live on and own property within the closed area.
BC Wildfire said Wednesday that upcoming hot weather may have an impact on the fire’s activity, but that it could also make for ideal conditions for planned ignitions. The fire remains classified as out of control.
– With files from the Kelowna Capital News