September 14, 2017
Regional Fire Recap - September 13, 2017
**Information provided by the BC Wildfire Service and the RDEK - September 13, 2017
• Lamb Creek – This fire is now estimated at 2094 hectares and is 5% contained. It was a good day for crews again today on the fire. There were 169 personnel on site today with 21 pieces of heavy equipment, along with four helicopters and air tankers when required. Crews worked building contingency guards and were working directly on the south end of the fire and doing hand ignitions into the fire to remove fuels. The evacuation ORDER remains in effect for Moyie North and Moyie South. Click here for today's video update on the Lamb Creek Fire (starts at 4:48 on the video).
• Quinn Creek – This fire is estimated at 7513.5 hectares in size and remains in the Bull River drainage. Click here to view the latest map. Cooler temperatures in the area today helped contribute to less aggressive fire behaviour, and the fire remains in the upper Brule Creek area. There were 19 firefighters, 1 helicopter and 5 pieces of heavy equipment on the fire today. Air tankers and helicopters have established a retardant line on the ridge on the east side of the drainage to prevent further movement eastward and a portable retardant pit has been set up. An evacuation ALERT remains in effect for the District of Elkford and all the rural properties north of Sparwood (including Line Creek, Fording River and Green Hills). The alert does NOT include the District of Sparwood. Click here for today's video update on the Quinn Creek Fire.
• White River Complex – The fire is estimated at 25,641.8 hectares. Today, there were 164 firefighters, 6 helicopters and 11 pieces of heavy equipment. There are 40 firefighters working on the southwest flank to hold the line with the goal to stop any potential advancement towards Whiteswan Lake. These crews are working to establish fuel free and hose trail from the anchor at White River Forest Service Road moving north along the fire's edge. The firefighters will also be mopping-up along the fire's perimeter. In the vicinity of Whiteswan Lake, structure protection units are in place as a precautionary measure. On the western flank, there are 40 firefighters working to establish hose lay. There will also be work done to establish road access for this division of the fire. On the south east flank, 84 firefighters along with a strike team of heavy equipment worked to restrict growth south to Thunder Creek by establishing a fuel free zone and hose trail along this fire edge. Falling of danger trees will also occur to increase the safety for the crews working in this area. On the north end of the fire, heavy equipment is working to provide access and a safe environment for crews to work. The evacuation ORDER for the Whiteswan area remains in effect.
• Linklater – There is not significant change to report on the Linklater fire. The fire remains estimated at 927 hectares on the Canadian side of the border. There were 34 firefighters and 5 pieces of heavy equipment along with 1 helicopter working the fire today continuing with mop up and hitting hot spots. An evacuation ALERT remains in place for the west side of Lake Koocanusa in the Newgate area.
• Soowa Mountain – This fire is estimated to be 4,277 hectares in size. Click here to view a map of the fire. It is visible from Highway 3 and Elko and continues to generate smoke but it is not threatening any communities at this time. The fire has been moving east away from the community of Elko today. There were 6 firefighters and one helicopter on the fire today. Crews were removing danger trees and ensuring no embers ignited a new fire in the area to the northwest. Click here for today's video update on the Quinn Creek and Soowa Mountain Fires.
• Flathead Area Fires (including Lodgepole) – The Incident Management Team arrives this week and will soon be taking over the management of the fires in the Flathead area. It's anticipated they will assume command of the fires toward the end of the week. There are two new lightning strike fires reported on the BC Wildfire Service website tonight near the Alberta border. One in Pollock Creek (estimated to be 0.4ha) and one near McLatchie Creek (estimated to be 0.3ha). The BC Wildfire Service will provide more information once these teams are in place.There are no threats to communities at this time.
• St. Mary River – The fire is 100% contained. Crews continue to be on site doing mop up. This is the last day this fire will be reported on.
Parks Canada Fires of Note:
• Kenow – On September 11th, the Kenow Fire demonstrated aggressive fire behaviour for many hours due to high winds and critically dry fuels. The fire moved north at a high rate of spread along the Akamina parkway, through grasslands along the Waterton Lakes National Park’s Entrance Road and moved outside of the park boundaries. Parks Canada estimates the Kenow wildfire now covers an area of approximately 35,000 hectares. The fire is still active in Waterton Lakes National Park. Additional information about wildfires in the national mountain parks is available at www.parkscanada.ca/fire.
• Verdant Creek – The Verdant Creek wildfire is active in Kootenay National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park. The fire remains on the west side of the Continental Divide and east of Highway 93 South. The fire is currently estimated to be approximately 17,644 hectares.
Other Items of Note:
• Rocky Mountain Elementary and Elkford Secondary School remain closed until further notice due to the evacuation alert in the Elkford area. The School District will provide updates and communicate with families through the School District website www.sd5.bc.ca
• Great work today by members of Fernie Fire & Emergency Services and Hosmer Fire Department, who quickly extinguished three small grass fires along Highway 3 approximately 2km east of Fernie.
• The Air Quality Advisory / Smoky Skies Bulletin remains in effect
• To report a fire or smoke plume, please call *5555 or toll free 1-800-663-5555
• To follow the RDEK's Facebook page: www.facebook.com/eastkootenay