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Wildfire north of West Kelowna being held, smoke to decrease over next 2 days

The blaze close to Bear Lane Forest Service Road was found just after 7 p.m. Thursday night
A small wildfire was found off Bear Lane Forest Service Road on Thursday night, May 19, north of West Kelowna. It is being held. (BC Forest Service)

A small wildfire north of West Kelowna is now being held.

The blaze was found just after 7 p.m. on Thursday night (May 18) from a lightning strike. It was 2.5 kilometres away from Bear Lane Forest Service Road.

When a forest fire is being held, that means it’s not likely to spread under its current conditions. On BC Wildfire Service’s website, it states the fire is zero hectares in size, meaning the blaze was smaller than 0.1 hectares.

Scattered thunderstorms hit the Central and Southern Okanagan on Thursday night. Despite rain from the storms, the recent hot weather and lightning can cause wildfires while high winds can spread the blaze. The fire danger rating in Kelowna is currently 4/5, which means there’s a ‘high danger’ chance of fires starting.

The Okanagan isn’t expecting any thunderstorms on Friday but there is a 60 per cent for them on Saturday afternoon (May 20). According to Environment Canada, many regions of the Interior and the Okanagan will be impacted by smoke in the next 24-48 hours. Because of that, a special air quality statement is in affect. On top of air quality, visibility will also be reduced because of the smoke.

With a shift in weather patterns, smoke conditions should begin to slowly improve throughout the day on Friday.

READ MORE: ‘We need to be more water-wise’: Okanagan chiefs, mayors encourage conservation

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Jordy Cunningham

About the Author: Jordy Cunningham

Hailing from Ladner, B.C., I have been passionate about sports, especially baseball, since I was young. In 2018, I graduated from Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops with a Bachelor of Journalism degree
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