Juniper wildfire now under control in Kamloops after prompting evacuations | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Juniper wildfire now under control in Kamloops after prompting evacuations

The Juniper wildfire started by lightning on July 1, 2021. It can be seen here around 11 p.m. from Sun Rivers.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK

Multiple neighbourhoods in Kamloops were evacuated last night after a lightning storm sparked a wildfire in a residential area.

No structures have been lost in the wildfire, and at least 400 homes have been saved. The City of Kamloops now says the Juniper wildfire is under control and all evacuated residents can return to their homes after it spread rapidly through the night.

"The number of lives saved is priceless," the City said in a release. "Kamloops Fire Rescue and B.C. Wildfire Service will continue to action hot spots on the fire today."

There are 21 wildfire service personal working the fire today supported by air tankers and helicopters, which will be highly visible from Kamloops, according to the B.C. Wildfire Service.


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Homes in Juniper and Valleyview were evacuated around 10:50 p.m., July 1, and returned after Kamloops Fire Rescue and B.C. Wildfire Service made progress suppressing the fire.

Residents in the Juniper area were evacuated again around 1:10 a.m., July 2, when the wildfire flared up again.

The Emergency Support Services reception, which was set up at McArthur Island Park, was already at capacity with evacuees from Lytton, so residents were told to seek shelter with family or friends for the night.

According to B.C. Wildfire Service, the Juniper wildfire is estimated to be 15 hectares in size within the city.

At least three other wildfires started on July 1 in and around Kamloops.

Northwest of Kamloops, the Sparks Lake wildfire continues to burn at an estimated 200 square kilometres, and McKay Creek, toward Ashcroft, is slightly larger at 220 square kilometres.

In the last two days, 15 wildfires have started within the Kamloops Fire Centre as hot and dry conditions continue throughout the region, made worse by recent thunderstorms.

According to Environment Canada, the heat wave will continue over the North Thompson region, north through the Cariboo to Prince George and the Peace River, as temperatures remain above 30 C through the day and nighttime temperatures only as low as 14 C. 

The heat warning remains in effect as there is little reprieve from dangerously high temperatures, even through the night.

— This story was updated at 9:27 a.m., July 2, 2021, to say the second evacuation order for Juniper residents was rescinded.

— This story was updated at 2:13 p.m., July 2, 2021, to include new information about resources on the Juniper wildfire.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Levi Landry or call 250-819-3723 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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