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Speaker series tackles wildfires in Revelstoke

Local firefighters battle a blaze on Mount Macpherson in 2006 – the last major fire in the Revelstoke area. - Revelstoke Review file photo
Local firefighters battle a blaze on Mount Macpherson in 2006 – the last major fire in the Revelstoke area.
— image credit: Revelstoke Review file photo

The B.C. Interior Forestry Museum is kicking off its speaker series with a talk about wild fire control, prevention and emergency planning in Revelstoke.

Museum director Glenn Westrup said with last year's fires in Fort McMurray and Northern B.C., it was felt the topic of wildfires would be a good start for the series.

"The perimeter of Revelstoke is surrounded by forest and the local community being aware of the emergency response and planning is critical to successfully combatting any outbreaks during the summer," he said.

The speaking engagement will include Revelstoke Fire Chief Rob Girard, fire training officer Jim Blake and Mount Revelstoke National Park fire management officer Spencer Verdiel.

"Basically, we're going to talk about forest management with regards to wildfire, and then we're going to talk about the emergency program," said Girard. "So what the community wildfire protection committee has been doing for the last, almost a decade, with regards to fuel management, hazard mapping, modified fuel breaks. And then we're going to be talking about the emergency management program and explain how the city and Electoral Area B is ready to deal with any emergencies, including wildfires."

Verdiel's focus will be on prescribed burns as fire management in Mount Revelstoke and Glacier National Parks.

Girard said Revelstoke is in good shape as far as forest fuel management goes because of the natural breaks that surround the community.

"We have a lot of natural breaks with highways, transmission lines and ski runs that basically put the fires back on the ground and enables firefighters to fight the fire," said Girard. "Where we do some work with regards to fuel management, fire smarting on private land. Our next piece we're wanting to do is community education."

The Wild Fire in Revelstoke presentation takes place at the community centre on Thursday, March 16, at 7 p.m., and is free for the public.

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