4pm – The Rock Creek fire is now 2500 hectares in size and uncontained. Midway Community Center is home to, among others, about sixty campers from the Kettle River Provincial Park. They have been informed that the entire part had not, in fact, succumbed to the blaze, and that the area that traditionally houses RV’s is intact. There has been no word on whether or not they have been given permission to return to the site.
The Sidley Mountain fire is, at least visually, if not officially, fully contained. One structure was damaged during the fire that burned approximately 50 hectares on the Canadian side of the border fire.
1 pm –
Two wildfires flank the town of Bridesville on Highway 3 today, with the more serious of the two being the ‘west of Rock Creek’ blaze, which in uncontained and has consumed nearly 2000 hectares. Numerous homes in the Westbridge area have been destroyed, and hundreds of residents have been evacuated. Most are being housed at churches and community halls out of the fire zone.
Campers staying at the Kettle River Provincial Park were ordered to leave immediately, without their equipment and possessions. Some were without shoes, and many left wallets and valuables at the site, which was completely destroyed. The fire also viciously attacked Hulme Creek Rd, where all residents were ordered evacuated. One resident, Sarah Bond, spoke of driving out with flames lapping at her feet as she was forced to flee her 25acre property. Firefighters were able to save the residence, but a recently erected deer fence, and thousands of dollars in fruit and nut trees were consumed by the blaze. Another resident, Erika Tafel, told us that she had heard conflicting reports regarding the fate of the Hulme Creek residences, and was expecting an announcement to be made in Midway very shortly.
The Sidley Mountain fire, about 22 kilometers east of Osoyoos, originated in Washington State, and reportedly was set off by a plane crash just south of the Canadian border. At last report, the fire covered an area of 50 hectares, and was machine guarded.
Meanwhile, people from throughout the Boundary have been helping by providing food, clothes, toiletries, shelter and more. In Midway, the RDKB emergency response team has set up an evacuation centre there helping those displaced.