Rock Creek fire 100 per cent contained; High winds still expected in area
It’s been almost three weeks since the Rock Creek fire flared up, sending campers fleeing from the Kettle River Provincial Park, and forcing hundreds of residents to leave their homes.
Today, the good news has come in that the Rock Creek-Westbridge fire is 100 per cent contained at 4,417 hectares.
According to the BC Wildfire Service, crews are continuing to work on hotspots inside the perimeter, patrol the area and mop up the fire boundary. They are also recovering some of their equipment.
In a release, the Service said a scan is scheduled for this morning.
“Homes in and around the fire-affected areas may continue to see a helicopter flying in the early morning hours performing heat scans. This process assists firefighters in pursuing hotspots within the fire perimeter and prevents uncontained growth towards the containment line, thus minimizing the risk for the fire to breach established fire guards.”
The fire camp will be dismantled later this week in Midway but but fire suppression will continue in Rock Creek.
A total of 30 homes and 15 additional structures were damaged or destroyed by this fire.
The evacuation alert to the area was lifted on Monday.
Despite the good news, the fire service says that winds up to 40 km/hour out of the southeast-southwest are expected in the Rock Creek, Westbridge and Christian Valley areas.
Winds may reach 60 km/hour later this afternoon.
Due to the high winds, residents may see flying ash and weakened trees may fall. There are still many dangerous trees in the area, with weakened roots due to fire damage and the heavy equipment used in the area.
Residents are asked to stay only on the main roads and stay out of the fire suppression area.
Hunters are also asked to stay out of the fire area because fire fighters are still working there. The fire area starts at Rock Creek, goes north to Westbridge, east to Nicholson Creek and west to Hulme Creek road and Ed James Lake.
Two helicopters, two pieces of heavy equipment and 119 firefighers are still working on this fire.