Working to limit fire fuels

Several members of the Clifton Highlands Community Association spent Friday and Saturday clearing deadfall and trimming small branches from a forested area off Clifton Road in preparation for fire season.

The volunteers took a four-hour course at the Kelowna Fire Department's Enterprise Way station, and Granger Evans says they learned the “why and the wherefore and the how-to” of preventing a destructive interface wildfire.

“Prevention is always a little better than a cure, so that's what we're doing,” said Evans.

Saturday afternoon, the cleanup crew was working across from Blair Pond Park.

“This resident here is unable to do the cleanup for himself, so we're helping him and providing the manpower to clean up this hillside right here,” Evans said.

“We'll move along the road and go down to an area down on the lower side of the road, down towards the lake, and do some clean up work along there.”

Evans says this is the second week they've been at it, and they plan to continue for several more, “as long as there's work to be done and there's volunteers to do it.

“If we got another two dozen people out here we could make short work of this job.”

The work to rid the nearby forests of fuels comes on the heels of the worst wildfire season in the history of the province, that saw eight homes destroyed in Okanagan Centre last July.

This year, 14 homes are currently evacuated due to a wildfire northwest of Kamloops, while two others are evacuated west of Lillooet.

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