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Princeton fire grows

Contributed: Bradley Hilliard-Lythgoe

UPDATE: 4:27 p.m.

A mandatory evacuation order area for a fire north of Princeton now includes 60 total properties. The change of number of homes does not relate to new homes being evacuated but updated mapping Saturday morning of existing evacuations.

The mandatory evacuation order includes Highway 5A between Summers Creek Road and Dry Lake, approximately 10 km north of Princeton, and the first 20 kilometers of Summer Creek Road. 

The advisory evacuation alert area has been expanded beyond the community of Missezula Lake, at the end of Summers Creek Road.

The alert now includes all homes north and east of the junction of Hembrie Mountain Rd and Princeton Summerland Rd along Princeton Summerland Rd to Shinish Creek Rd just south of Chain Lake.

This includes all homes on Hembrie Mountain Rd, Pinewood Dr and Siwash Rd. These areas are locally called Jura, Erris and Jellicoe.

The Missezula Lake area, presently under advisory evacuation alert, contains an estimated 195 homes on 208 properties. The expanded area along Princeton Summerland Rd adds approximately 233 homes putting a total of 428 homes on advisory evacuation alert in the Princeton area.


UPDATE: 2:24 p.m.

The Princeton Emergency Support Services Reception Centre is now using 250-293-6672 as their contact number.

All evacuated people are asked to register in person at the Riverside Community Centre or call 250-293-6672.


UPDATE: 2:17 p.m.

A mandatory evacuation order area for a fire north of Princeton remains at 54 total properties.

The order includes Highway 5A between Summers Creek Road and Dry Lake, approximately 10 km north of Princeton, as well as the first twenty kilometers of Summer Creek Road.

Anyone at nearby recreation sites is advised to leave immediately.

The community of Missezula Lake, at the end of Summers Creek Road, has been placed on an advisory evacuation alert.

Residents there are being advised to shelter in place. The BC Wildfire Service, RCMP and the Town of Princeton Fire Service are on scene.

The Missezula Lake area, presently under advisory evacuation alert, contains an estimated 195 homes on 208 properties.

There is no increased risk for Missezula Lake since last night and residents are asked to check the media and prepare for evacuation. 

An emergency support services reception centre has been set up at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton at 148 Old Hedley Road.

All affected people within the evacuation order area are asked to register at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton at 148 Old Hedley Road or call 250-295-1514. Information will be updated at www.rdos.bc.ca.

At this time 42 residents from 18 of the evacuated properties have registered with the reception centre.

A number of people self evacuated themselves north to Merrit.

Persons that self-evacuated north to Merrit can call the Princteon reception center at 250-295-1514 to register. The Thompson Nicola Emergency Operations Centre has been notified.

DriveBC shows that Highway 5A between Aspen Grove and Princeton has been closed to traffic. Consult www.drivebc.com for updates. 


UPDATE: 9:15 a.m.

The fire near Princeton has grown to 1,500 hectares. 

This growth comes after the BC Wildfire Service pegged it at an estimated 200 hectares Friday night. 

The fire has forced the evacuation of dozens of homes, as well as a children's camp.


UPDATE: 6:50 a.m.

As of late Friday, the wildfire burning near Princeton was estimated at 200 hectares in size.

The BC Wildfire Service says it is zero per cent contained and was growing quickly as it was fanned by high winds.

Thirty firefighters were fighting the blaze Friday evening, however smoke made it difficult to safely fight the fire from the ground.

An air tanker, one piece of heavy equipment, as well as the Princeton Fire Department were also assisting.


UPDATE 9:45 p.m.

A mandatory Evacuation Order area for a fire north of Princeton has been expanded to 54 total properties. The mandatory evacuation order already includes Highway 5A between Summers Creek Road and Dry Lake, approximately 10 km north of Princeton, BC. It now includes the first 20 kilometres of Summer Creek Road. Anyone at nearby Recreation Sites are advised to leave immediately.

The community of Missezula Lake, at the end of Summers Creek Road, has been placed on advisory Evacuation Alert. Residents there are being advised to shelter in place. The BC Wildfire Service, RCMP and the Town of Princeton Fire Service are on scene.

An Emergency Support Services Reception Centre has been set up at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton at 148 Old Hedley Road. All affected people within the Evacuation Order area are asked to register at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton at 148 Old Hedley Road or call 250-295-1514. Information will be updated at www.rdos.bc.ca.


UPDATE: 8:25 p.m.

For the parents of campers who have been evacuated from Camp Tulahead:

"We arrived safely at the EV Free church in Merritt. Please contact the camp director, Tony at 250-315-9665 to arrange pick up of your son or daughter," said Camp Tulahead.


UPDATE: 6:17 p.m.

Properties between Summers Creek Road and Dry Lake north of Princeton along Highway 5A are in the process of being evacuated due to a wildfire by first responders.

The area evacuated is approximately 10 km north of Princteon. The BC Wildfire Service, RCMP and the Town of Princeton Fire Service are on scene.

An Emergency Social Services Reception Centre is being set up at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton at 148 Old Hedley Road.

All affected people within the evacuation order area are asked to register at the community centre if possible.  

Information will be updated at www.rdos.bc.ca.

DriveBC shows that Highway 5A between Aspen Grove and Princeton has been closed to traffic. Consult www.drivebc.com for updates.

There are 34 properties within the evacuation order area.


UPDATE: 5 p.m.

Homes are being evacuated north of Princeton.

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen says properties between Summers Creek Road and Dry Lake north of Princeton, along Highway 5A, are in the process of being evacuated due to a nearby wildfire.

The area evacuated is approximately 10 kilometres north of Princeton. BC Wildfire Service crews, RCMP and Princeton firefighters are on scene.

An Emergency Social Services reception centre is being set up at the Riverside Community Centre in Princeton, at 148 Old Hedley Rd.

DriveBC reports Highway 5A between Aspen Grove and Princeton is closed to traffic.


UPDATE: 3:14 p.m.

Fire information officer Jody Lucius confirmed that BC Wildfire Service crews are responding to a fire in that area at this time.


ORIGINAL

Highway 5A is closed in both directions at the junction with Highway 3 in Princeton because of a forest fire.

The estimated time of opening is not available and there is no detour.

Castanet will provide more details as they become available.



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