UPDATED: Lightning caused Mount Aylwin wildfire near Silverton new hotspot for Southeast Fire Centre
The BC Wildfire Service is working hard to contain the Mount Aylwin wildfire, located two kilometres south of Silverton and east of Highway 6.
The lightning caused interface wildfire, near the base of Mount Aylwin, was discovered Friday (July 10).
Currently there are 20 firefighters on the ground battling the blaze with the assistances of two helicopters and multiple air tanker groups.
The wildfire is estimated at eight hectares and continues to affect residents who live between Enterprise Creek and Red Mountain Road along Highway 6 near Silverton.
The Regional District of Central Kootenay Emergency Operations Centre issued an evacuation alert Saturday to 35 residents in the area.
RDCK issues Evacuation Alert for residents near Silverton
The Regional District of Central Kootenay Emergency Operations Centre has issued an evacuation alert Saturday to 35 residents who live between Enterprise Creek and Red Mountain Road along Highway 6 near Silverton.
Anitra Winje Information Officer with the RDCK said in a media release the alert was given to residents of fire numbers numbers 8479 to 9155.
Information officer Jordan Turner said in a media release Saturday that 44 new lightning-caused wildfires have been reported across the Southeast Fire Centre since Friday.
“The BC Wildfire Service is responding to these new incidents on a priority basis,” Turner said.”
“One of these fires is two kilometres south of Silverton and east of Highway 6, near Beaverton Creek and the base of Mount Aylwin.”
“It is currently estimated at seven hectares in size,” Turner added.
“BC Wildfire Service crews, helicopters and air tankers are on scene.”
Meanwhile the ground crew has been increased to 108 firefighters on the 450 hectare Sitkum Creek Wildfire.
The firefighters are supported by three helicopters and seven pieces of machinery.
The evacuation alert in the area issued by the RDCK EOC remains in place.
Approximately 350 residents in the area between Sitkum Creek South and Willow Point (Six Mile Lakes Road) have been given the evacuation alert notice.
The alert is for residents in the area between Sitkum Creek South and Willow Point (Six Mile Lakes Road) are affected by this precautionary measure, due to erratic wind conditions.
Residents will be notified should conditions worsen.
Other prominent fires include:
- 0.7 hectare fire near China Creek, three kilometres west of Castlegar
- A group of four small fires directly across Lower Arrow Lake from Deer Park
- 0.4 hectare fire near Nemo Creek, two kilometres off the west shore of Slocan Lake
- A two hectare fire on 12 Mile Creek between Sandon and Kaslo
- 0.5 hectare fire on Mt. Loki, opposite Kaslo;
- 0.4 hectare fire near Nemo Creek, two kilometers off the west shore of Slocan Lake;
- 0.3 hectare fire on the north side of Cedar Creek, near Ainsworth;
- 0.15 hectare fire on Springer Creek, near Slocan;
- 0.1 hectare fire in West Arm Park;
- Spot fires at Lendrum Creek and Loon Lake, near Ainsworth; the north and south sides of Coffee Creek; in the Six Mile drainage; and at Procter.
Turner said during times of increased activity, the BC Wildfire Service prioritizes fires and wildfire suppression response.
“If fires are not posing an immediate threat to residences we may make resources available for higher priority incidents,” Turner explained.
“The primary objectives of the BC Wildfire Service are the safety of our crews, along with protecting life and property.”
Turner said the BC Wildfire Service is engaging contract crews, industry partners and local fire departments in wildfire suppression and response. Given the many high priority wildfires province-wide, resources are ultimately limited.
Turner said the Southeast Fire Centre is expecting more thunderstorms through the weekend with equally spotty showers Temperatures will be variable, but still warmer than normal in many areas today.
“The BC Wildfire Service is urging the public to be extra cautious in the backcountry,” Turner explained.
“All person-caused fires are preventable and these incidents may affect the ability of the firefighting crews to respond to naturally occurring fires.
Evacuation alert area residents should prepare for an evacuation by:
- Staying calm.
- Turning off appliances (stove, lights, air conditioners and heaters).
- Not using more vehicles than you require.
- Not using the telephone unless you need emergency services.
- Locating all family members or co-workers and designate a safe meeting place in the event that an evacuation order is called.
- Gathering essential items such as medications, eyeglasses, valuable papers (i.e. insurance), immediate care needs for dependants and, if you choose, keepsakes (photographs, etc.). Have these items readily available for a quick departure.
- Consider moving any disabled persons and/or children to a safe area.
- Moving pets and livestock to a safe area.
- Arranging to transport household members or co-workers in the event of an evacuation order.
- rranging accommodation for your family if possible. In the event of an evacuation, emergency accommodation will be provided if required.
The RDCK said residents should monitoring local media, including The Nelson Daily and the RDCK website.
If an evacuation order is issued, emergency personnel will alert impacted residents by visiting their homes.
Notices will be posted in neighbourhoods. The alert will also be broadcast on local radio as well as on the RDCK’s Facebook page.