July 24, 2015 - 11:26 AM
VERNON - Quick-acting fire crews managed to suppress a grass fire at the Vernon landfill well before it turned into something bigger.
Vernon Fire Rescue was notified just before 5 p.m., yesterday, July 23, but had some initial difficulty pinpointing where it actually was. A number of people phoned 911 to report smoke, but with the point of origin guarded by hills, deputy Vernon fire chief Jack Blair says it was a bit of a challenge locating it.
When they did find it, the fire was burning in a grassy, undeveloped area off Birnie Road near the landfill.
“The guys actioned it as quick as they possibly could,” Blair says. “It actually doubled in size within the first minute because the wind picked up. Fortunately, they got some water ahead of it, in the direction the fire was headed, that really helped.”
About 22 firefighters from Vernon and Coldstream fire departments battled the fire, with support from a B.C. Wildfire helicopter dropping buckets of water.
Crews had the three hectare fire contained in fairly short order, but firefighters remained on scene overnight to watch for flareups. By Friday morning, crews had left the scene.
The cause of the fire is being investigated, but a possible explanation is a bird hitting a power line in the area.
“We’ve had others in the same area started by birds hitting power lines,” Blair says, adding B.C. Hydro confirmed there was an outage there.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015