Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

Small blaze east of Prince George ‘under control,’ BC Wildfire Service reports

The suspected lightning-caused fire began near Purden Lake this week
BC Wildfire
BC Wildfire Service. (via Glacier Media)

Less than 24 hours after it was initially reported to crew members, a wildfire burning outside of Prince George is now under control.

The BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) says the Bowron Forest Service Road blaze, located roughly 75 km east of the city and south of Purden Lake Provincial Park, has been contained to 0.2 hectares in size since it lit up yesterday (Aug. 19).

BCWS says the fire is suspected to be lightning caused at the 32.5 km mark along the rural stretch.

This is the 36th wildfire, grown to 0.1 hectares or more, in the Prince George Fire Centre since April 1, all of which are out sans Bowron FSR for the moment.

Four fires have emerged in the month of August thus far with the largest to have burned 50 hectares of land in the Montney Coolies area north of Fort St. John.

In total, there have been 540 fires since April 1 across B.C., but more than a quarter of them have been suspected to be sparked by lightning in the last week.

The service's website shows many of the 151 fires that have flared in the last seven days, and almost three dozen are listed as out of control.

Those include the 14-square kilometre wildfire in the south Okanagan, which has already destroyed one home and forced people to leave more than 300 properties.

Cooler temperatures and light winds helped a team of 86 firefighters make what the wildfire service says is "great progress" building a guard on the flank of the fire closest to homes.

Two other lightning-caused fires continue to create problems.

Ten properties were ordered evacuated Wednesday night in southeastern B.C. as a wildfire near Canal Flats chewed through four square kilometres of bush, and homes remain threatened by a small but aggressive blaze close to the southern Interior community of Beaverdell.

The wildfire service says "good progress" was made Wednesday on the flanks of that 18-hectare fire closest to homes and Highway 33.

Near Penticton, evacuation alerts remain posted by the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen, affecting about 3,700 properties on the east and west sides of the so-called Christie Mountain fire, currently the largest in B.C.

A specialized incident management team is being assembled to handle the blaze and the wildfire service says members from across B.C. will begin arriving in Penticton over the next day.

An air quality statement warning of smoky skies over the south Okanagan, Boundary and Whistler regions has been issued by Environment Canada.

It advises asthma sufferers or anyone with a chronic condition to stop or reduce activity levels if wildfire smoke makes breathing uncomfortable.

In Prince George, the weather office is calling for a risk of thunderstorms later this afternoon (Aug. 20), which could contain winds up to 70 km/h, large hail and potentially up to 15 mm of rain.

- with files from The Canadian Press