Firefighters make quick work of first wildfire of the season in the southern Interior - InfoNews

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Firefighters make quick work of first wildfire of the season in the southern Interior

April 03, 2017 - 1:04 PM

KAMLOOPS - The first wildfire of the 2017 season in the southern Interior was put out quickly by B.C. Wildfire crews this past weekend.

On Saturday, April 1, a blaze near Lytton grew to around 5.7 hectares before crews were able to quell it.

Fire information officer Max Birkner says the first fire of the season, which runs from April 1 to March 31, was a considerable size but not aggressive and didn’t pose a significant threat.

“An initial attack crew of three firefighters went out,” he says. “They got it under control quite quickly.”

The cause of the fire is unknown and is still being investigated. Crews are going back today to check on the area and make sure the fire is properly dealt with.

While the backwoods are still damp from winter runoff and some areas still have snow on them, Birkner says the rising spring temperatures are starting to dry things out.

“It’s drying out quite quite quickly in the Kamloops Fire Centre,” he says. “Temperatures look to be slightly above average and precipitation is approximately average.”

While winter lasted longer in the region then recent years, Birkner says it’s impossible to say when the fire season will start. Crews have been preparing for the last month for fires, and more are being hired in May to cover the height of the season over the summer.

Right now crews are training and working on projects to prepare areas for the fire season, including cutting down danger trees and controlled burns.

A wildfire on March 24 was the last blaze during previous forest fire season in the region.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brendan Kergin or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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