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

StartUp Revelstoke implementing phase two of entrepreneurship supports

StartUp Revelstoke is beginning phase two of their initiative: events and workshops.… Continue reading

Stories Beneath the Surface exhibition now open at Revelstoke Museum

Revelstoke Museum and Archives opened a new exhibition on Oct. 18, 2018… Continue reading

Live results for the Revelstoke municipal election

Watch here and on Facebook for live results

A lifetime in education

Revelstoke’s Jeff Nicholson is retiring after 28 years

Revelstoke Grizzlies win 11th straight game

The Forum was packed on Saturday night

Revelstoke Cribs: Eagle Pass Lodge

Explore the eclectic houses, lodges and other spaces in and around Revelstoke… Continue reading

China opens mega-bridge linking Hong Kong to mainland

The $20 billion bridge took almost a decade to build while incurring major delays and cost overruns

Dangerous Cat 4 Hurricane Willa closing in on Mexico coast

Officials said 7,000 to 8,000 people were being evacuated from low-lying areas, mostly in Sinaloa state

Excessive speed named as cause of Taiwan train derailment

18 people were killed and at lesat 170 more were injured

VIDEO: Fire destroys historic Hitching Post restaurant in Hedley

Two people were injured as fire ripped through the Hedley restaurant around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday

Ovechkin has 4 points as Caps rough up Canucks 5-2

WATCH: Defending champs pick up impressive win in Vancouver

World Junior Hockey fever hits Vernon

Vipers spice up floor ball demonstration at OK Landing School

Shuswap refugee family settles into new, more hopeful life

Father of 10th Syrian family to come to Salmon Arm says learning English, work, top priorities

RCMP seek missing Vernon man

Michael Ramsey, 49, was last seen Oct. 21

Most Read