The Maple Mountain fire during the summer of 2018 brought the wildfire issue close to home. (File photo)

EDITORIAL: Preventing wildfires

So far this year, 598 fires have destroyed 18,608 hectares provincewide.

After a relatively uneventful spring and early summer, wildfire season has arrived.

So far this year, 598 fires have destroyed 18,608 hectares provincewide. This includes 117 fires which have burned 1,638 hectares in the Kamloops Fire Centre’s region. This region includes the Okanagan and Similkameen.

Some of these fires are burning close to home.

The Eagle Bluff fire, southeast of Okanagan Falls, is at 225 hectares and an evacuation alert has been issued for the area.

In the Similkameen, the Richter Mountain fire, south of Cawston, is at 403 hectares and while crews are continuing to battle this fire, an evacuation alert has been rescinded.

READ ALSO: RDOS rescinds evacuation alert for 41 properties near Eagle Bluff wildfire

Other fires have been reported elsewhere in the region.

And with the weather forecast calling for hot, sunny weather, the wildfire risk is increasing.

This year’s wildfire season is far less intense than 2018 and 2017, the worst years on record in British Columbia.

During each of those summers, a provincial state of emergency was declared and the total fire damage was well past one million hectares.

The costs of firefighting efforts in each of those years topped $600 million.

Those of us who were here during those summers will never forget the heavy smoke, the poor air quality, the limited visibility and the emergency preparations in case of an evacuation alert or evacuation order.

We have also seen other catastrophic wildfires, including the Garnet fire in 1994, the Giant’s Head Mountain fire in Summerland in 1996, the Okanagan Mountain Park fire during the devastating 2003 fire season and others.

While some wildfires of note have been caused by lightning, others are human-caused.

Because of this, it is essential to exercise fire safety at all times, especially during the summer wildfire season.

Prevention is far less stressful and far less costly than working to control and contain a wildfire.

To report a typo, email:
news@summerlandreview.com
.



news@summerlandreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Warmer fall weather could extend wildfire season: AccuWeather

Above seasonal temperatures are expected throughout September, October and November

Town experiments with protecting eroding brown bridge deck

Unusual wear and tear on the decking of Princeton’s brown bridge has… Continue reading

Word on the Street: Festivalgoers at the 27th annual Salmon Arm Roots and Blues

The Observer asked: Where are you from and what brought you to the festival?

New Penticton/Kelowna transit route ready to roll out

Route 70 Penticton/Kelowna will provide a direct trip to Kelowna from Penticton and Summerland

The Offspring and Sum41 ready to rock Penticton

The Offspring and Sum 41 will stop in Penticton to the South Okanagan Events Centre

VIDEO: Title of 25th Bond movie is ‘No Time to Die’

The film is set to be released in April 2020

RCMP catch ‘erratic’ driving thieves; upon release steal mountain bike

The incident involved a police chase, taser, and a destroyed vehicle

New study suggests autism overdiagnosed: Canadian expert

Laurent Mottron: ‘Autistic people we test now are less and less different than typical people’

B.C. father tells judge he did not kill his young daughters

Andrew Berry pleaded not guilty to the December 2017 deaths

Trans Mountain gives contractors 30 days to get workers, supplies ready for pipeline

Crown corporation believes the expansion project could be in service by mid-2022

Riot on the Roof returns to top of North Okanagan Parkade

Party of the summer will rock out above the city

Heavy police responses in Kamloops connected to unfounded weapons calls

Mounties were seen in Westsyde and in North Kamloops on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning

Suspect drops white powder running from police near Kelowna playground

Kelowna RCMP responded to reports of two individuals swinging a chain in a park

Rosemount cooked diced chicken linked to listeria case in B.C.

The symptoms of listeria include vomiting, nausea, fever, muscle aches

Most Read