All reporters and photographers must sleep
The good news – water bombers arrived late today with increased visibility to do their runs.
Observation indicates they are building a fire guard on east side of Manuel’s Canyon
Fire has grown to 200 hectares. BCWS says this is primarily a better reading of the fire in daylight.
BC Wildfire Service has also dispatched a structure protection specialist to assess residences in the evacuation alert area. Structure Protection Units have been deployed to the incident as well.
One such unit dispatched Manuel’s Canyon on the OI Reserve.
Update on info here and below – pictures show the view many different locations and in context.
Fire information officer Hannah Swift says the fire is estimated at 1.2 square kilometres in size, but crews have not been able to see its full eastern flank due to smoke and power lines in the area that pose a challenge to aircraft. Swift says the fire could spread quickly, fuelled by hot and dry conditions as well as dried-out sage and grass that can ignite in a flash.
The suspected cause of the fire is human activity and it’s under investigation.
Credit Castanet/Canadian Press
Eagle Bluff (K51244)
Last updated: Monday, August 05, 2019 at 12:32 PM
Location: approximately 10 km southeast of Okanagan Falls (also north of Oliver which is likely closer)
This is not an interface fire – Residents of homes etc – warned to be alert. No danger at the moment.
Area of fire remains at 120 Hectares.
100 personnel have been assigned to the incident and will arrive on site throughout the day. Two pieces of heavy equipment are also on site today. Crews will be operating 24 hours a day on this incident until further notice.
A Structure Protection Specialist has been activated as well. They will be working downslope to assess residences in the area.
Resources are continually challenged by the steep and rocky terrain in the area and site safety is a priority.
Six helicopters have been mobilized to respond. Additional air support will be available throughout the day, as required. (Only 1 this morning joined by two others at about noon. All other resources not visible.
The Canyon (Vaseux Creek)
Large format picture – press to enlarge
Prevailing winds from north sending smoke south and east. At fire scene – relatively clear is most of the valley area to Oliver and beyond.
Only one chopper working at the moment dipping into the Okanagan River north of the dam. Loads concentrated on the canyon area and the crown of Gallagher Lake bluff.
An early sun rise will shed some light on Forest Fire burning on top of Gallagher Lake Bluff and to the north of it – in Vaseux Creek Canyon.
This area is not heavily timbered but what fuel there is burning and in a night sky looks more dramatic than the “fight” in the morning. Forestry crews on the scene now “mustered” at Fortis Substation Rd.
The danger lies to the east of what you can see. Water bombers and helicopters would likely attack as soon as possible in the morning.
Danger? Some caution for residents in the area below the fire. Power lines and the substation of concern. Oliver Fire Department not requested to assist by RDOS or BC Wildfire.
ODN thanks all the people who sent in photographs last night
An Evacuation Alert has been issued by the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen Emergency Operations Centre (RDOS EOC).
The RDOS EOC has placed several properties under Evacuation Alert due to a wildfire north of Oliver in Electoral Area “C.”
All properties on the east side of BC Highway 97, extending south from McIntyre Creek Road to James Way south of Gallagher Lake, including Brauns Road and Gallagher Lake Road; and further includes all properties on James Way, and then extending southeast to McKinney Road at Manuels Creek Road; and extending to the north along the west side of Manuels Creek Road to approximately 3.5 kms on McIntyre Creek Road.
Additional properties in the region may potentially be impacted.
BC Wildfire and the RDOS EOC are actively assessing the situation and should conditions deteriorate, Evacuation Orders may be issued for affected residents.
An Evacuation Alert has been issued to prepare you to evacuate your premises or property should an Evacuation Order be issued. Property owners will be given as much advance notice as possible prior to and Evacuation Order, however you may receive limited notice due to changing conditions.
Proactive measures to prepare for an Evacuation Order are strongly advised.
Exactly what this was is – not really known – Firefighters dispatched to OIB location on McKinney Rd – east of Sandpoint Drive around the supper hour. Some concern by police – accident of some kind involving an older SUV – attended by three units of the Oliver Fire Department, one ambulance and 3 police cars.
Shortly after firefighters return to quarters. EMS personnel giving assistance to driver. Police incident?