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Wildfire east of Kelowna still out of control, area remains evacuated

A wildfire burning about 20 kilometres east of Kelowna remains out of control.

The fire, which has forced about 1,000 people from their homes, is about 4.6 square kilometres in size, said Navi Saini with the B.C. Wildfire Service. While that is an increase over previous estimates, that is attributed better mapping rather than growth.

The fire that started Thursday is not contained but Saini described it as a smouldering ground fire with some open flames.

Highway 33 south of the fire remains closed and a winding detour has been established for non-commercial vehicles.

Central Okanagan Emergency Operations said no properties have been damaged and favourable weather conditions has aided crews in protecting structures.

Saini said local fire departments have installed wildfire sprinkler units on several properties for added protection.

An evacuation order covering 474 properties remained in effect in the Joe Rich community.

Emergency Management B.C. said 264 people from the community had registered at an evacuation centre in Kelowna.

While the fire season is far from over without significant rains to soak tinder dry ground, residents in some parts of the province have been re-assured they’re no longer at high risk.

Residents of the village of Cache Creek who have been prepared to leave for more than five weeks because of a massive 1,750 square kilometre blaze were told Friday evening the evacuation alert for the community has been rescinded.

Alerts for the village of Clinton and an area near Salmo in the Kootenays have also been lifted.

 

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http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/wildfire-east-of-kelowna-still-out-of-control-area-remains-evacuated