Vernon's Priest Valley Arena de-ices early due to electrical fire

Priest Valley Arena
Image Credit: Google Street View

VERNON - An electrical fire is responsible for early ice removal at Priest Valley Arena and disruptions at the Vernon Aquatic Centre over the weekend.

A major breaker blew Sunday morning and caught fire, resulting in the evacuation of a minor hockey team from Kamloops. The fire was contained to the electrical panel, and firefighters were quick to bring it under control.

Recreation services director Doug Ross says power was also knocked out to the main recreation centre building, and a lifeguarding class at the pool had to adjust its schedule to classroom work for the morning. The noon hour lap and leisure swim, as well as the 1:30 p.m. public swim were cancelled. Public swimming resumed at 4:30 p.m.

The affected breaker was part of the electrical system for the ice-making plant, and due to the damage, Ross says the ice at the arena is being taken out five days early. There were a few groups booked in to use the arena over the next few days, but Ross says they’ll be accommodated at Kal Tire Place instead. The cause of the electrical failure is not known.

“We are going to be doing testing on all our electrical panels to check and see if there are any other hot spots,” Ross says.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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