Evacuation Order reduced to Alert for Sheep Creek Road near Salmo
In a release Tuesday, the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) has downgraded the Evacuation Order that was previously in place for the Sheep Creek Road area, southeast of Salmo, to an Evacuation ALERT, effective immediately.
The RDCK said the Evacuation Order has been in effect since August 10, due to the McArthur Creek wildfire.
“The BC Wildfire Service has advised that imminent danger due to the McArthur Creek wildfire has diminished and residents can return home, although the area remains on Evacuation Alert,” said Chris Johnson, the RDCK Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) Director. “We urge residents and visitors in the area to remain prepared to evacuate if required. The RDCK will continue to monitor the situation and advise if anything changes.”
While Sheep Creek Road is open, a number of Forest Service Roads (FSRs) are closed due to the fire: Bennett FSR, Billings FSR, and Waldie FSR. A map of the closures can be seen below, or on the RDCK website .
The McArthur Creek wildfire (N51557) was discovered on July 29, and is suspected to have been caused by lightning. The estimated size is 703 hectares. The fire is a modified response fire, meaning it is managed using a combination of suppression techniques, including direct and indirect attack, and monitoring to steer, contain and otherwise manage fire activity within pre-determined perimeters. For more information, see the wildfire information page .
All other current Evacuation Orders and Alerts remain in effect. The RDCK EOC will provide further updates as needed.
The burning of wildfires in the area has forced Environment Canada to issue a Special air quality statement for most of the Southern Interior of BC.
“A cool and showery weather pattern over the long weekend helped slow fire behavior and improve air quality for many regions,” Envirnoment Canada website said.
“Several large wildfires continue to burn, particularly over the central and northern Interior, resulting in ongoing smoky skies surrounding the wildfires. A change from northwesterly to southerly winds on Wednesday will likely spread smoke from wildfires south of the border into BC.
“A wetter and breezier pattern towards the end of the work week is expected to improve air quality conditions across the province.”
Temperatures are expected to rise to 29 C Thursday and Friday before a cold front brings rain Saturday.