Hot, dry conditions keep Kamloops firefighters busy

By Jill Sperling
July 4, 2017 - 6:00pm

KAMLOOPS — The recent hot and dry conditions have been keeping Kamloops firefighters on their toes. 

Kamloops saw two quickly spreading brush fires spark yesterday. 

The first, at a shooting range west of the Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre, was suspected to have been started by a gun shot toward the hillside. 

"By the time we got there, just with the steep terrains, the flames moved up the hillside very quickly, wind carrying it sort of southward too so it spread very quickly. It turned into basically a 12 hour day for our crews and forestry crews," said Kamloops Fire Rescue Platoon Captain Rob Chalmers.  "

It's very dry out there, it moved very quickly, it covered a lot of ground." 

A second fire on Saddleback Drive in Batchelor Heights was also spread by the wind. Fortunately for nearby residents, the wind was blowing flames away from homes. 

That fire is suspected to have been caused by a piece of construction material coming in contact with high-voltage power lines. 

Dry grass was quickly ignited.

"I think our long wet spring is definitely over," Chalmers said. "It is dried up absolutely there now. It sounds like we're in for another week of super hot weather here.

"It's just going to make it that much worse. You couple that with the winds that come up in the afternoon like they do here, any kind of little thing, any spark, cigarettes. We're to that point know where grasses are dry enough that the cigarettes are going to start being a problem. We're going to probably see an upswing in activity for that stuff." 

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