Morning update on small wildfire burning in hills above Vernon | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vernon News

Morning update on small wildfire burning in hills above Vernon

Smoke from a wildfire burning near Hartnell Road and Lynx Drive, Wednesday, July 18, 2018 in Vernon.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Jordin Kutt

VERNON - A smoky, highly visible fire sparked by lightning last night in the hills above Vernon likely looks worse than it is, says the local fire chief.

Bill Wacey, with BX-Swan Lake Fire Rescue, says the fire burning in the Hartnell Road and Lynx Drive area does not appear to have progressed overnight and does not look like it's posing any imminent threats.

His crew was called out at 9 p.m. yesterday, July 17, after multiple reports came in about a fire on what locals call Vernon Mountain. Smoke and an orange blaze could be seen from many parts of the city.

The location of the fire is on a slope off Hartnell Road, about one kilometre from the last address, Wacey says. When firefighters arrived, they found a roughly 150 metre by 400 metre burn moving up the hill.

Once there, Wacey says crews determined the fire was outside their boundary and under the jurisdiction of the B.C. Wildfire Service, which sent a crew last night.

“We remained for a couple hours to remain vigilant in case the wind picked up, but by 11 p.m. everything had sat down,” Wacey says. “There was not much fire activity.”

He says they were lucky the wind died down, otherwise things could have gone differently.

As of this morning, smoke is still visible but Wacey says he hasn’t observed any flames or heard anything from B.C. Wildfire.

B.C. Wildfire Service spokesperson Marla Catherall was not able to provide an update as of 9 a.m. this morning. She said there were roughly 20 lightning-caused fire starts last night in the Kamloops Fire Centre and resources are being deployed this morning.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston or call 250-309-5230 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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