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Shuswap wildfire reaches 210 hectares, evacuation alerts remain in effect

Alerts issued Thursday for nearly 100 properties on lower east Adams Lake
Nearly 100 properties on lower east Adams Lake are under evacuation alert due to a wildfire. (CSRD map)

A wildfire burning east of Adams Lake has more than doubled in size.

Following a flyover at the site of the East Adams Lake wildfire on Friday, July 21, BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) updated the size of the blaze from 70 to 219 hectares.

A BCWS spokesperson explained the increase was the result of some fire growth since Thursday, as well as a more accurate estimate. The fire was discovered on July 12; lightning is believed to have been the cause.

During Friday’s flyover, BCWS personnel witnessed Rank 2 fire behaviour (low-vigour surface fire) with some pockets of Rank 3 (moderately vigorous surface fire). BCWS said for safety reasons, ground crews have not been able to respond as the terrain includes numerous steep areas. However, a helicopter has been providing bucketing support.

BCWS noted the fire spread mostly along the northeast flank and, as of Friday, did not pose an imminent threat to nearby structures. Regardless, evacuation alerts issued Thursday, July 20, for properties to the south remained in effect.

The alerts were issued by the Columbia Shuswap Regional District (CSRD), the Thompson Nicola Regional District and the Adams Lake Indian Band.

In a Friday media release, the CSRD said the fire is 2.3 kilometres from the nearest structure, and reminded those affected by the evacuation alerts that they should be prepared to leave on short notice.

The CSRD noted forecasted winds look favourable, “as they are predicted to push the fire growth north, away from structures,” and that the work being done by the helicopter would “help keep the area wet and cool, and reduce any fire movement down the slope towards the populated areas.”

Shuswap Emergency Program staff have activated a Level-One Emergency Operations Centre and will be responding to any changes in fire status throughout the weekend.

Read more: Wildfire burns off Highway 97C

Read more: B.C. firefighter numbers top 2,500, as 100 Brazilians arrive today
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Lachlan Labere

About the Author: Lachlan Labere

Editor, Salmon Arm Observer
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