Parts of RDKB Area C and Grand Forks on evacuation alert
South Grand Forks and areas around Christina Lake are on evacuation alert as of 1:21 p.m., Aug. 26th.
This is an alert — not an order — and residents are urged to stay calm and prepared.
The alert came about due to strong winds that are predicted over the next two days, which may blow embers from the Stickpin Fire south of the region toward the areas on alert.
This area includes the industrial area of the City of Grand Forks, and ‘Ruckle” the area south of the Kettle River as well as Christina Lake and Electoral Area C, the Ponderosa and Cascade areas are also under alert.
“Anything south of the Kettle River,” said Roly Russell, Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) Area D Director. The alert is due to a shift of winds, not because the fire has moved closed to the south Boundary region.
Residents are not being directed to evacuate, but to prepare for an evacuation.
The RDKB are asking anyway that sees a spot fire caused by embers to call 911.
Residents in the affected areas are being hand-delibered evacuation notes by emergency personnel.
There are 648 (1504 residents) properties being issued evacuation alerts in the South Area D and Grand Forks areas and another 74 properties (170 residents) in South Christina Lake.
With files from an RDKB media release issued at 1:21 p.m. Aug. 26
The Stickpin wildfire burning in northern Ferry County, Washington, 5 km south of the Canada-United States border is now estimated at 19,240 hectares. The BC Wildfire Service is working closely with fire agency representatives in the United States to coordinate wildfire response for this incident.
The BC Wildfire Service has begun work on Branch 3 of the Stickpin wildfire (Also known as “The Canadian Branch”), which is the northeast portion the fire. Current objectives include developing situational awareness, identifying anchor points, and establishing control lines to keep this incident from reaching Canada.
Growth to the northeast has been minimal over the last few days due to lower temperatures and winds, and the northern part of the fire burning into an area with fewer fuels as a result of the 2003 Togo wildfire.
Due to heavy smoke in the area, the BC Wildfire service is currently unable to support crews on the ground with airtankers or helicopter buckets.
If required, BC Wildfire Service airtankers may use Christina Lake for air operations. An Air Attack Officer flying in a smaller “bird-dog” or lead aircraft will sound an alarm over the area prior to airtankers landing in the lake. For the safety of firefighting personnel and the public, recreational boaters are asked to avoid using the lake during these operations. Safe fire suppression efforts depend on the support and understanding of the public.
The BC Wildfire Service is working with structural protection firefighters from the Boundary region to assess properties which could potentially become threatened by this wildfire. Residents will be notified if an Evacuation Alert or Order is put in effect.
The BC Wildfire Service would also like to acknowledge the support from Border Services in both countries in expediting resources to this incident.
The Southeast Fire Centre thanks the public for its ongoing support in reporting wildfires. To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone.