Kamloops, Vernon volunteers helping remove burned vehicles, fire-proofing | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops, Vernon volunteers helping remove burned vehicles, fire-proofing

Kamloops Auto Recycling is picking up burned cars and pieces of equipment for residents of wildfire ravaged Monte Lake.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Kamloops Auto Recycling

While the threat of wildfires may be behind us for this year, the cleanup of materials on the ground is ongoing in many burned towns.

Some businesses are helping to remove trickier objects, while others are helping to remove future forest fuels and potential fire hazards.

A scrap metal recycling and towing company in Kamloops is extending a helping hand to victims of wildfires in Monte Lake.

The team at Kamloops Auto Recycling is already making runs to Monte Lake to load up and tow away burned vehicles, free of charge, and giving back money for the metal.

Brendan Kelly is the owner of the business.

“Cleaning up burned vehicles and equipment is a bit of a challenge,” Kelly said. “They can be difficult to load and they have loose parts and pieces. We have the equipment to do the job safely, including nets to prevent flying debris on the highway.”

READ MORE: Logan Lake has written the Fire Smart playbook for other cities, towns to follow

Vehicles and equipment have scrap value depending on what it is and how heavy it is. Kelly said he wants to give back as much money as he can to wildfire victims.

“The residents of Monte Lake have lost so much,” he said. “We will give what we can for their losses. We are just helping in our way as best we can. I have a friend out there who lost everything. The team here is excited to be assisting in some way.”

Kelly said he would love to extend the free service to Lytton but the distance is too far to be financially viable.

Meanwhile, a North Okanagan waste removal company lent a helping hand to Vernon residents earlier this month in preparation for next fire season.

Dump Runz donated several brush bins to Canadian Lakeview Estates for residents to remove flammable materials and fuel from the area, free of charge, in a fire proofing initiative.

The estates are in one of the most wooded and exposed areas in the city.

READ MORE: Kamloops residents invited to meeting on how to fire smart a neighbourhood

The initiative was executed in consultation with the Homeowner's Association and the City. Four big brush bins were emptied and returned over a few days, and due to the hard work of numerous residents, over 150 cubic meters of flammable organics were removed.

“The success of this effort speaks to the success of private companies working in cooperation with the community to solve problems and help the City’s bottom line,” said Scott Anderson, owner of Dump Runz. “Whether it’s helping to solve fire problems, sponsoring events, donating items or labour, there’s a great deal of goodwill out there waiting to be harnessed. I’d like to see the City pursue this initiative and build a database of companies willing and able to help in periods of crisis, but also with smaller things on a more regular basis.”

For scrap metal removal call or text Brendan Kelly at 250-574-4679.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Ainslie 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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