Regional forest fire update

The Northwest Fire Centre extinguished a small fire near Terrace and crews continue to manage several other fires in the region.

  • Aug. 13, 2012 8:00 a.m.

SMITHERS – The Northwest Fire Centre has successfully extinguished a small fire near Terrace and crews continue to manage several other fires in the region.

The wildfire that was burning near Copper River Road east of Terrace is now extinguished. It was initially thought to be inaccessible to ground crews, but further assessment located a way to gain access. Firefighters built a trail through the steep terrain and put out the fire over the weekend. The final size of the fire was less than a hectare. Motorists travelling along Copper River Road are urged to be cautious, since there is still a potential for debris to fall onto the road area.

The fire centre is currently managing three “modified response” fires within the region. One of these fires is located north of Dease Lake (near Boya Lake Park) and is estimated at 150 hectares. The smoke from this fire may be visible to the community of Good Hope Lake and travellers along Highway 37.

A total of 47 firefighters are currently working to contain this fire along its south and west flanks to protect the highway corridor and stop the fire from expanding into the park. The northeast flank of the fire is currently not contained but is being monitored closely. This area will be patrolled by air to assess the fire’s progress and determine whether further action is required.

Two other wildfires are burning within BC Parks sites southwest of Houston. Both have been assessed and will be monitored using established “trigger points” that could prompt an additional firefighting response. Values in the area are being protected, but these fires will be allowed to burn within set parameters.

The modified response approach to these fires takes into account that fire is a natural part of the forest’s life cycle. Fire returns nutrients to the soil, resulting in new growth and the creation of habitat that is preferred by some wildlife. Fire also helps remove the build-up of fuels and creates a natural firebreak that will make it easier to deal with future fires.

The Northwest Fire Centre will be sending out patrols during the warmer weather that’s forecast to spot any fires that were previously undetected. To report a wildfire or unattended campfire, please call *5555 on your cell phone or call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free.

For the latest information on fire activity, conditions and prohibitions, visit the Wildfire Management Branch website: www.bcwildfire.ca. You can also follow the latest wildfire news on Twitter at http://twitter.com/BCGovFireInfo or on Facebook at http://facebook.com/BCForestFireInfo.