A wildfire continues to burn in the Sheep Creek area, west of Premier Lake. Crews are on site as of Thursday, July 23, 2020. (submitted)

UPDATE: Wildfire at Premier Lake listed as out of control as fire grows to over 4 hectares

Skimmers using water from the lake to cool fire 50 km north of Cranbrook

Update (Friday, July 24, 2020):

Crews remain on scene at a fire burning in the Sheep Creek area, 50 kilometres north of Cranbrook and just west of Premier Lake.

As of Friday morning, the fire is estimated to be at 4.10 hectares in size, and is listed as out of control.

According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, the status of ‘out of control’ describes a wildfire that is not responding (or only responding on a limited basis) to suppression action, such that the perimeter spread is not being contained.

Southeast Fire Centre information officer Kimberly Wright says they will continue to update the Townsman with information as it becomes available.

“The B.C. Wildfire Service continues to work to extinguish the wildfire near Sheep Creek (N20606),” said Wright in an email. “Yesterday, skimmers were skimming water off of Premier Lake and air tankers were supporting suppression efforts. One Initial Attack Crew, a Response Officer, ten Unit Crew members and one water tender are on-site this morning. The fire is suspected lightning caused. No structures are currently threatened.”

The only other fire reported in the Southeast Fire Centre as of Friday morning is located north of Revelstoke in the Wood River FSR area. It is listed at 0.10 hectares and the status is under control.

Effective as of noon on Friday, both Category 2 and 3 fires are prohibited throughout the Southeast Fire Centre.

Campfires that are a half-metre high by a half-metre wide, or smaller, are still allowed, as well as cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.

Anyone lighting a campfire must maintain a fireguard by removing flammable debris from around the campfire area and have a hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to properly extinguish the fire.

READ MORE: Category 2, 3 fires to be banned in the Southeast and Coastal Fire Centres

Original Post (Thursday, July 24):

A 1.5 hectare fire is currently burning 50 kilometres north of Cranbrook, in the area west of Premier Lake.

The BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) reported at 4:55 p.m. on Thursday, Jul. 23 that skimmers are skimming water off the lake in order to cool down the fire and that airtankers are on route.

At present, no structures are under threat from the fire, but BCWS advises the public to immediately vacate the site.

Boaters are asked to keep out of the way of aircraft and personnel so that they can safely perform their work.

The level of control of the fire has yet to be released as the status is still new, and the cause of the blaze is unknown.



corey.bullock@cranbrooktownsman.com

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