In the past 48 hours there are two new fires in the Kootenay Lake area:.009 hectare at Coffee Creek, and.
The fire is now estimated at over 3100 hectares (7660.27 acres) in size and has been growing in a northerly direction.
Firefighters in the area are working hard to put out all the fires, and Fanny Bernard, fire information officer for the Southeast Fire Centre, says there are also 436 contract personnel now working in B.C.
The number of firefighters deployed to the Testalinden Creek wildfire has now topped 160, and there are 12 helicopters and 20 pieces of heavy equipment in use. Experts are continually assessing the best methods for firefighting in this terrain and that could include further burning out of forest fuels within and adjacent to the Hester Creek drainage in the coming days. Because this would result in visible smoke and open flame, the community will be notified before any such action is taken.
Officials for the B.C. Wildlife Service are also discussing how to help with the Stickpin fire, 7 k.m. south of the U.S./Canadian border.
“Smoke from these fires is expected to linger in the region due to prevailing winds from the south and west”, said the Southeast Fire Centre media release. If this happens, air operations on the Testalinden Creek wildfires could be restricted for safety concerns.
The Okanagan-Similkameen Regional District says the evacuation alert has been expanded due to wildfire growth in the uplands of Kobau Mountain.
During a visit recently to Midway, Premier Christy Clark predicted the cost of fighting fires this season could balloon to as much as $400 million. The continued support from the Town of Oliver and stakeholders is appreciated.
According to BC Wildfire, smoke from the fire will continue to be seen in Oliver and along Highway 97.