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Slow but steady progress corralling the Rock Creek wildfire

FILE - Three firefighters on their way Friday to put out a hot spot at the side of Highway 3 at the western edge of the Rock Creek, B.C. fire on Friday Aug. 14, 2015.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Penticton Herald -Joe Fries
August 20, 2015 - 9:49 AM

ROCK CREEK - Progress is being made on the huge wildfire which has destroyed 30 homes and 15 other buildings in the Boundary region.

The B.C. Wildfire Service says guards have been built around 25 per cent of the Rock Creek blaze.

Fire information officer Mike McCully said crews have also managed to map the wildfire more accurately and it is now estimated at just over 40 square kilometres.

He said firefighters could be challenged Wednesday by weather conditions as temperatures around Osoyoos were forecast to soar near the mid-30s and winds were expected to gust to 40 kilometres per hour.

Many residents have been allowed to return since being forced out last Thursday when the human-caused blaze was sparked.

The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary downgraded on Wednesday night the evacuation order on about 100 homes to an evacuation alert.

A stretch of Highway 33 remained closed, but the regional district said local traffic would be permitted to residents with passes.

More than 100 firefighters, seven helicopters and 14 pieces of heavy equipment are working to contain the fire.

The province announced Wednesday that liquor stores will be accepting donations to help people displaced by wildfires as part of an effort by the Red Cross.

The money would be used for blankets, food and water, to reunite evacuees with family members and for long-term needs such as rent and replacement of equipment so people can return to work.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2015
The Canadian Press

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