Over the last week, Creston Fire Rescue (CFR) responded to several wildfires and also supported the B.C. Wildfire Service in conducting a prescribed burn.
On March 26 and 27, the prescribed burn was held over 12 hectares on Arrow Mountain (known locally as Goat Mountain). The operation was conducted by B.C. Wildfire Service and Creston Community Forest, in collaboration with the CFR.
The burn site was about three kilometres north of Creston and four kilometres south of Wynndel. Residents were warned that light smoke could linger in the area for a few days.
According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, fire is a normal and natural process in many of B.C.’s ecosystems. Prescribed burns help to reduce accumulation of dead, combustible material and decrease the risk of future catastrophic wildfires.
Also on March 26 at 6:15 p.m., Creston Valley Fire Departments were dispatched to the area of 8 Street in Lister for an interface wildland fire. While responding, there was another call for a grass fire involving a power pole at a different location. Units were able to split up and control both incidents. The CFR is reminding the public to remember to be careful when conducting open burns.
On March 28 at 1:22 p.m., Creston Valley Fire Departments were dispatched by B.C. Wildfire to the area of Highway 3A north of Wynndel for an interface wildland fire. Firefighters were able to set up hose lines and water supplies on two sides of the fire to protect a house and power line.
Highway 3A was closed in both directions for a 14.9-km stretch between Kuskoonook Rest Area and Bathie Road (approximately 20 kilometres north of Creston). A detour was in effect through Highway 3 and Kootenay Pass. The highway re-opened for single-lane alternating traffic later in the evening once the fire was under control.
Crews continued to work the fire into the afternoon of March 29. The fire was mapped to be approximately 7.6 hectares. The cause is under investigation. As of March 30, Highway 3A is open in both directions. Be advised that crews could still be working in the area. The CFR warns the public to stay aware of their surroundings and do not stop on the highway. It can create a dangerous situation for fire crews and other drivers.
To report a wildfire, unattended campfire, or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air-quality advisories, visit www.bcwildfire.ca.