LAKE COUNTRY – Despite the wind, firefighters managed to contain 75 per cent of the 50 hectare Okanagan Centre wildfire last night.
The fire started Saturday, July 16, and within hours, forced hundreds to evacuate. It also destroyed eight homes on Nighthawk Road and outbuildings on a property on Tyndall Road.
Officials with Central Okanagan Emergency Operations say today, July 17, the evacuation order remains in place for Nighthawk Road, Long Road and Tyndall Road from south of 10810 to the end of the pavement. There are 58 properties under evacuation order, however 11 large, undeveloped properties on the gravel portion of Tyndall Road are no longer on evacuation order.
Jack Seaton Park is closed
The Okanagan Centre wildfire is now 75% contained and is estimated at 50.3 hectares in size.
Ground crews will continue extinguishing spot fires and conducting danger tree assessments and falling in fire impacted areas. When it is safe to remove the evacuation order, residents will be allowed home..
A complete, interactive map of areas and streets under evacuation order and alerts is available online at the Emergency Operations Centre website.
The ECO says fire crews made good progress on the blaze overnight, despite several challenges.
“Windy conditions prompted a flare up on the south end of Tyndall Road, but no homes were impacted,” EOC officials says in the release. “Ground crews will continue putting out spot fires and assessing fire impacted areas, working towards full containment today. When it is safe to remove the evacuation order, residents will be allowed home.”
Lake Country fire chief Steve Windsor said Sunday the human-caused fire started in an unoccupied area on the shores of Okanagan Lake south of Okanagan Centre but said speculation of a campfire as the source is unconfirmed.
Police are conducting ongoing roaming patrols of evacuated areas and ask the public to stay away and officials say RCMP officers have "zero tolerance for people accessing closed areas.”
For the very latest information go to the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations website here.
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