VIDEO: Ground crews keep a close eye on largest B.C. wildfire

Originally estimated to be 79,192 hectares, officials said more accurate mapping shows smaller size

Ground crews near Fort St. James kept a close eye on the Shovel Lake fire overnight. Officials hope that today’s winds remain light.

The fire, burning at an estimated 78,564 hectares is the largest fire burning in B.C.

Originally estimated to be 79,192 hectares, BC Wildfire Service said the reduction in size was due to more accurate mapping thanks to clear skies that moved in late Friday.

The fire remains active, visible from surrounding communities including Fraser Lake and Endako. Yesterday, due to mid-day wind, the provincial wildfire service issued an extreme fire behaviour warning.

READ MORE: RCMP work to ‘neutralize’ explosives on property near Shovel Lake wildfire

“When (humidity) drops below a certain percentage that’s when we start to see increased fire behaviour as the fuels start to dry out. Because all our fuels are already pretty dry, when there is no humidity to help out, it just increases fire behaviour,” fire information officer Forest Tower said at the time.

The aggressive fire is under 24-7 watch by a rotating shift crew made up of structural protection specialists and firefighters, BC Wildfire Service said.

Supplied with equipment from the Office of the Fire Commissioner the team is assessing and protecting structures as needed on the north shore of Fraser Lake, Nadleh Whut’en and out to the Echo Lake and Dog Creek areas.

Sign near a work site in Fort St. James.(Alex Pierre/Facebook)

Firefighters from Mexico sent to help fight the raging fire, were able to deal with smouldering hotspots in areas burned near Endako.

Meanwhile, crews were able to conduct a burn-off from Stern Lake to Ormond Creek to remove fuels from the south perimeter. The planned ignition was supported by water-skimming aircraft.

“This will act as a fuel free area to help stop the fire growth south towards the north shore of Fraser Lake by removing fuel within the fire perimeter to eliminate the chance of re-burn and fire spotting potential,” the BC Wildfire Service said.

Saturday’s forecast is calling for sun with variable winds from the south and southwest moving in with some gusts anticipated. The 113 firefighters will be working towards establishing guards along the Pacific Northern Gas pipeline, east from Stern Lake, as well as along the east side of the fire on the Sutherland Forest Service road and Barlow Forest Service Road.

There are nearly 600 blazes burning across the province.

Have photos or a news tip about the Shovel Lake wildfire? Email provincial reporter Ashley Wadhwani with ‘Shovel Lake’ in the subject line.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Just Posted

Rainfall warning: Up to 70 mm expected across Fraser Valley

Environment Canada issued a weather warning heading into the long weekend

Chilliwack students take the lead as mental health advocates

About 100 Chilliwack youth prepped to make a difference during Mental Health Week

Chilliwack PEO: ‘We who are sisters’

International oganization celebrating 150 years of service

No more mobile vendors on Harrison beach

The approval of an updated business licence bylaw means Nolan Irwin is without a cart

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

B.C. RCMP receive application for Police Cat Services

RCMP announced the launch of the Police Cat Services unit as an April fools joke

Rats available for adoption in Vancouver

In a social media post the City of Vancouver says you can adopt a rat for $5.

Kirkland Signature veggie burgers recalled due to possible metal fragments

Recalled products came in 1.7 kg packages with a best before date of Apr. 23, 2019

Chaos at the ferry terminal for people heading from Vancouver to the Island

Easter crowds create backlog at Tsawwassen ferry terminal

Parents of 13 who tortured children get life after hearing victims

One of their daughters fled their home and pleaded for help to a 911 operator

Crews battle Burnaby blaze; 2 people sent to hospital

Emergency Support Services helping residents displaced by fire

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Storms blast South, where tornadoes threaten several states

9.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia at a moderate risk of severe weather

Most Read