Lightning blankets the Southern Interior of B.C. sparking 22 new wildfires in the region. Image: Kayleigh Seibel/Black Press Media

Non-wildfire related calls line plague dispatchers, block line

The logjam of callers Tuesday night resulted in long wait times for people legitimately calling about new fire activity.

Responders at BC Wildfire Service have an important message for everyone.

Do not call their *5555 emergency number set up to report fires, unless you are actually reporting a fire.

Tuesday night saw 38 new fires spark across the province and an overwhelming number of calls flooded the fire reporting line.

The logjam of callers resulted in long wait times for people legitimately calling about new fire activity.

Related: More lightning forecast as storm sparks 38 new wildfires in B.C.

Related: 911 jams causes panic among residents

Related: More thunderstorms on the way as fires still burn

And that’s partly because some people were calling just to get updates on fire activity in their area.

“There were individuals in some areas that had challenges getting through,” said Claire Allen, fire information officer.

“We really appreciate the calls, but we want to make sure it stays a reporting line,” said Allen.

Another problem was people reporting fires that weren’t new, and many of those calls came from the Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys, she said.

“That’s a very dense population corridor and the fires that broke out last night were extremely visible.”

Allen stressed that calls from the public to report fires are “invaluable to us,” while urging responsible use of *5555.

To report a typo, email:
publisher@similkameenspotlight.com
.



andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Ministry denies request for air quality monitoring in Revelstoke

Revelstoke City Council’s request that an air quality monitoring system be re-established… Continue reading

Trans Canada Highway opened again near Sicamous

Motor vehicle incident on Highway 1 between Sicamous and Malakwa closed road after 6 p.m.

Air support grounded as fires fill the skies with smoke

Heavy smoke throughout the region thwarted efforts of BC Wildfire Saturday, as… Continue reading

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Key to the SOEC 2017 winner grateful for experience

Petersen discusses what it’s like to win a year of free concerts at the SOEC

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

West Kelowna wildfire evacuation alert rescinded

Alert rescinded Saturday for properties near four lakes within the Gottfriedsen Mountain wildfire

B.C. man designer behind Canucks’ retro jersey

Jeremie White was 20 years old when he told Canucks assistant GM Brian Burke he had a design

Lions give up late TD in 24-23 loss to Argos

B.C. falls to 3-5, fumbling away last-minute chance in Toronto

Eagle tree cut down legally a 1st for B.C. city

Planned eagle preserve ‘a first for City of Surrey’

Key to the SOEC 2017 winner grateful for experience

Petersen discusses what it’s like to win a year of free concerts at the SOEC

In Photos: Roots and Blues 2018 day one

Michael Franti and the Lil Smokies lit up the main stage to close out a day filled with great music

Most Read