Firefighters holding perimeter at Sparks Lake Wildfire | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Firefighters holding perimeter at Sparks Lake Wildfire

The Sparks Lake wildfire, June 30, 2021.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/BC Wildfire Service
July 05, 2021 - 12:43 PM

Over 200 people are working to maintain a perimeter around the Sparks Lake Wildfire, which has spread to over 36,000 hectares.

According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, 135 firefighters are assigned to Sparks Lake in 12 hour shifts.

Crews have been establishing fire guards from Frog Lake to Cayuse and Sedge lakes, preventing further spread to the southeast and Skeetchestn Indian Band.

Winds in the Deadman Valley often increase over night, so crews are seeing the wildfire expand between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., according to the wildfire service.

"(Fire crews) have adjusted tactics to use the wind to their benefit," the wildfire service said in a Sparks Lake wildfire update on July 5.

Along with the 203 personnel working the Sparks Lake wildfire, there are 19 helicopters and 24 pieces of heavy equipment.

Their current objectives are to establish control lines and protect structures as the wildfire remains out of control. On all flanks, crews are establishing control lines, with structure protection ongoing on the eastern end of the wildfire. They will also be looking for opportunities to used controlled burns, preventing spread of the wildfire.

The wildfire service will also be increasing their security presence in the area to keep people from accessing the area, due to safety risks.

Nearly 1,000 properties within the Thompson Nicola Regional District have been place on evacuation alerts, with orders issued to 164 properties.

Meanwhile, Skeetchestn Indian Band issued evacuation orders for IR# 0 and IR# 1 on July 2.

While cooler temperatures have slowed the wildfire's expansion, Environment Canada has issued a severe thunderstorm watch from the Thompson, Nicola, Shuswap and North Okanagan areas for July 5.

Go here to see the established area that B.C. Wildfire Service has restricted from public access.

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