Regional fire update
The Southeast Fire Centre is reporting 46 new fires in the region since Thursday, all but two of which were lightning caused (the Rock Creek fire is believed to be human caused, but that is under investigation right now).
There was also significant lightning last night and the night before, and fire centre information officer Fanny Bernard says they are expecting hold-over fires as a result (fires that smolder for hours or days before flaring), and says there is concern that it will be difficult to identify new starts because their smoke columns will be less visible with all the smoke already in our skies (most of which is coming from the US Stickpin fire, which is zero-per-cent contained and which conservative estimates put at 20,000 acres).
The Stickpin fire in the Colville National Forest is, however, less threatening to our region today than it was yesterday, despite being only 12 miles from our border.
“The wind was blowing north yesterday, but they’ve had a reprieve from the wind overnight and the forecast is indicating the wind will shift to the south,” Bernard said.
There’s a new fire in Deer Park, 820 hectares in size, but it’s burning very remotely and not threatening any buildings or structures. The fire on the Paulson Pass is about 20 hectares in size and is still in initial attack phase. The highway hasn’t been closed, but fire debris is causing issues for motorists.
Trail is rated as ‘extreme’ fire danger right now, while Castlegar is rated ‘moderate’.
“People need to be really careful right now,” Bernard said. “Where they park their ATVs; with dirt bikes, you need to pack your muffler with spark arresters. It’s so important people respect the fire bans. It’s still very dry out there.”
For updated information from the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary Emergency Operations Centre (EOC), go to twitter and follow at https://twitter.com/AlanLStanley