Wildfire near Monte Lake holding steady at 150 hectares - InfoNews.ca

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Wildfire near Monte Lake holding steady at 150 hectares

Aircraft use Heffley Lake to get water as they battle the Heffley-Louis Creek Road fire, Thursday, July 27, 2017.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Christine Freere
July 28, 2017 - 12:05 PM

KAMLOOPS - The Martin Mountain fire near Monte Lake that forced several residents to evacuate and has already consumed at least one home remains at 150 hectares and 30 per cent contained today, July 28, as more firefighters are on scene to join the battle.

B.C. Wildfire fire information officer Max Birkner says overnight there were 13 firefighters and heavy equipment working on the fire but reinforcements have arrived.

"Today we will have 70 firefighters, air tankers, helicopters, water tenders and heavy equipment that will work to increase containment on the fire," Birkner says.

Bob Smith, the manager of the Monte Lake Resort on Highway 97, praised firefighting crews for hitting the fire fast and hard.

“To me, it was handled very well by the people there,” he says.

The resort itself was never evacuated and Smith says the only impact is they are unable to go fishing due to the water bombers using the lake. He says Highway 97, which is now reopened but with a 50 km/h speed limit in the impacted area betwen the hours of 10:30 am and 6:30 pm, is moving well and things seem under control.

Smith wants people to know the resort is open and operational.

“As far as we’re concerned out here, we’re fine,” he says.

The other fire near Kamloops that continues to burn is the Heffley-Louis Creek fire just north of Heffley Lake near Sun Peaks.

Birkner says the fire is sitting at 1.8 hectares in size but a containment value is not yet known. There are 13 firefighters battling the fire on the ground along with helicopters dropping water on the blaze. There is also a water tender on site and hose has been laid around the perimeter.

"They're making good progress," Birkner. "However we just ask people to keep in mind the fire is in a challenging spot, though no structures are currently being threatened."

The B.C. Wildfire website shows 11 new fires broke out yesterday, July 27, seven sparked by lightning, two believed to be human-caused and two others undetermined. About $154 million has been spent so far on suppressing nearly 800 fires since April 1, the Wildfire Service says.

For updates on fire activity and an interactive wildfire map, go here or follow @BCGovFireInfo on Twitter.

For immediate updates and a full list of properties affected, go here or follow @TNRD on Twitter.

For a list of road closures and available detours, go here or follow @DriveBC on Twitter.

— With files from Charlotte Helston and The Canadian Press


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