The province established a restricted zone Sunday, Aug. 8, around the Garrison Lake fire, burning out of control near East Gate, 33 km southwest of Princeton.
The move is designed for public safety, and safety of fire crews, according to Claire Allen, information officer for BC Wildfire Service.
The order to restrict the area does not close Highway 3, she told the Spotlight..
“It’s a standard procedure for us,” said Allen, especially in areas where there is a major road.
When a Restricted Area Order is established under section 11(2) of the Wildfire Act, a person must not remain in or enter the restricted area without the prior written authorization of an official designated for the purposes of the Wildfire Act, unless the person enters the area only in the course of:
• Travelling to or from his or her residence;
• Using a highway as defined in the Transportation Act;
• Travelling through or entering the area as a person acting in an official capacity that is connected or involved in incident operations; or
• Travelling through or entering the area for a purpose approved by an official of supporting wildfire suppression activities.
Allen could not estimate how close the fire is burning to the Highway. “It’s got different fingers in different areas….It hasn’t crossed the highway.”
Fire retardant has been placed along the highway corridor, and fire activity that nears the road is actioned with helicopters bucketing water, she added.
As of Sunday the fire was estimated at 12,000 hectares, and 142 properties are on evacuation order.
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