The fire burning at Ollala Creek, above Keremeos, is now estimated at six hectares. (Photo courtesy of BC Wildfire)

Quick BC Wildfire response results in Okanagan lightning strike fires doused

Lightning storm resulted in nine wildfires in the Okanagan region

BC Wildfire Service were quick to jump into action after a storm rolled through the Okanagan region allowing them to get a handle on the nine wildfires that were believed to be ignited by lightning strikes.

“We were definitely busier than we have been for sure, but they were mostly small spot-sized fires,” said Taylor MacDonald, BC Wildfire information officer. “We have our weather forecasts that we review every day and we anticipate our activity based on the forecasting. So we know what to expect and can staff accordingly to that.”

Spot fires at Mount Mclellan (Okanagan Falls), Steward Creek (Penticton), Darke Lake (Summerland) and another in the Kelowna/Lake Country area have all been extinguished.

READ MORE: South Okanagan battling multiple wildfires

The biggest of the wildfires is near Keremeos. Ollala Creek is estimated to be six hectares, but is classified as being held at this time. There will be 24 personnel responding on Thursday and will be supported with heavy equipment already on site.

“We don’t anticipate any further spread to the existing boundaries. If the size does change it will most likely be because of a more accurate mapping of the area from crews on the ground,” said MacDonald.

READ MORE: Lightning strikes Peachland home, sparking fire

READ MORE: Storm rampages through Interior with more than 10,00 lightning strikes

The Kerr Creek fire, northeast of Penticton, is classified as out of control and has burned 2.1 hectares. A crew of 21 people are currently working on the fire, which is located in steep terrain. Fraser said aerial support is available to the area if it is needed.

A second wildfire east of Okanagan Falls at Mount Hawthorne is listed as under control and no further spread is expected. Three BC Wildfire personnel are working on the spot-sized fire.

More information regarding a second spot-fire in the Princeton region, Dry Lake, is expected to come later today. It is listed as being held on the BC Wildfire map.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


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