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Evacuation alert remains

UPDATE: 7:15 p.m.

An evacuation alert for more than 200 properties remains in effect around the Eagle Bluff Wildfire.

In an update to the 2 a.m. alert, the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen says the alert includes 206 residential homes, RV parks, mobile home parks and recreational campsites.

"The RDOS-EOC is active and RDOS staff have been working with BC Wildfire Service, Osoyoos Indian Band, RCMP, Oliver/Osoyoos Search and Rescue(SAR) and Penticton SAR to ensure that the residents under evacuation alert have been notified," the information bulletin states.

"BC Wildfire Service will continue responding to the Eagle Bluff wildfire 24 hours a day until further notice."

Additional air resources are being mobilized from both Kamloops and Penticton.

"Resources are continually challenged by the steep and rocky terrain in the area and site safety is a priority."

The fire, which started late Sunday night, has been mapped at 200 hectares.


UPDATE: 2:40 p.m.

The BC Wildfire Service has now mapped the fire at 200 hectares. Officials say the change is due to more accurate aerial information of the blaze.

Along with 100 firefighting personnel, the BC Wildfire Service has also dispatched a structure protection specialist to assess residences in the evacuation alert area. Structure Protection Units have been deployed to the incident as well.


UPDATE: 1:14 p.m.

Fire information officer Hannah Swift says the fire is estimated at 1.2 square kilometres in size, but crews have not been able to see its full eastern flank due to smoke and power lines in the area that pose a challenge to aircraft.

Swift says the fire could spread quickly, fuelled by hot and dry conditions as well as dried-out sage and grass that can ignite in a flash.

Six helicopters have been assigned to support crew on the ground, and Swift says they face steep and rocky terrain and temperatures up to 35 C.

There are 22 personnel fighting the fire, with an additional 80 arriving throughout Monday from across the province.

Swift says the suspected cause of the fire is human activity and it's under investigation.

— With files from Canadian Press


UPDATE: 10:06 a.m.

An additional 80 firefighters have been dispatched to the fire Monday morning, due to arrive on site throughout the day, BC Wildfire said.

Air support will be active today to support ground crews, as required. Last night, 10 personnel responded and four personnel remained on site overnight.

The BC Wildfire Service recommended an evacuation alert Sunday night to the Regional District of the Okanagan-Similkameen for electoral area C and to the Osoyoos Indian Band.

Fortis BC is on site assessing the impacts to hydro infrastructure and ensuring safety to ground crews.

If you have video email [email protected].


UPDATE: 7:30 a.m.

The wildfire burning close to Gallagher Lake is estimated at 120 hectares in size by the BC Wildfire Service.

The fire, now called the Eagle Bluff fire, is burning dangerously close to a Fortis electric substation, the Oliver Daily News reports, and appears to be burning itself out this morning.

There is a great deal of smoke on the eastern side of the valley.

Forestry crews have mustered at Substation Rd.

The Oliver Fire Department has not been requested to assist thus far.


UPDATE: 6:15 a.m.

An evacuation alert has been issued by the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen Emergency Operations Centre for a wildfire burning close to Gallagher Lake.

The alert applies to all local properties on the east side of Highway 97, extending south from McIntyre Creek Road to James Way south of Gallagher Lake, including Brauns Road and Gallagher Lake Road; and further includes all properties on James Way, and extending southeast to McKinney Road at Manuels Creek Road; and to the north along the west side of Manuels Creek Road to approximately 3.5 kilometres on McIntyre Creek Road.

Additional properties in the region may potentially be impacted, the EOC advises.

The evacuation alert was issued at 3 a.m.

BC Wildfire Service and the RDOS are assessing the situation and, should conditions deteriorate, evacuation orders may be issued for affected residents.

Residents should prepare to evacuate with limited notice.

There are about 150 homes in the South Okanagan community just north of Oliver.

The fire is burning within sight of the highway.


ORIGINAL: 11 p.m.

Reports are coming in of a new wildfire burning north of Oliver.

The fire is reportedly burning east of Gallagher Lake.

Details are few at this time, but open flame can be seen on the hillside.

It's not yet known how the fire started or how large it has grown.

Gallagher Lake is a tiny community centred around a guest lodge and campground.



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