Riondel firefighters put out wildfire near Gray Creek

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  • May. 17, 2016 8:00 a.m.
Riondel firefighters fought a wildfire near Gray Creek on May 16.

Riondel firefighters fought a wildfire near Gray Creek on May 16.

Fast action by the Riondel Volunteer Fire Department kept a wildfire to about an acre on May 16. The department was dispatched around 6 p.m. and spent over four hours fighting the blaze before forestry crews arrived to mop up.

The blaze was outside of their usual jurisdiction, but the department had purchased a wildland truck specifically for that purpose.

“We got a grant from CBT to get this truck, just so we can protect the East Shore,” said fire Chief Cory Medhurst.

Seven members attacked the blaze, the cause of which is not yet known, on private property near East Shore Storage in the 13000 block of Highway 3A. Five of the department’s 15 members stayed behind in Riondel.

“We had five members and all of our structural apparatus for incidents that might happen there,” said Medhurst. “The town was protected, just in case.”

This was the first East Shore wildfire of the season, and Medhurst said residents seem to be aware of the danger created by above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation.

“Most people are really adamant about keeping it down this year,” he said.

Wildfires can be reported by calling 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 (on most cellular networks), or by calling 911. For up-to-date information on fire prohibitions, danger rating and current wildfires, visit