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‘Incremental improvements’ on McDougall Creek wildfire in West Kelowna

‘Things are looking good, but we still have a long way to go’
West Kelowna Fire Chief Jason Brolund gives an update on the McDougall Creek wildfire during a regional briefing on Aug. 23, 2023. (RDCO/YouTube)

Fire crews continue to make progress on the McDougall Creek wildfire in West Kelowna.

Fire Chief Jason Brolund flew over the area yesterday with Mayor Gord Milsom and Westbank First Nation Chief Robert Louie.

“Things are looking good, but we still have a long way to go,” said Brolund. “We are making incremental improvements out there in the field because of hard work from firefighters on the ground.”

BC Wildfire Service currently has the fire mapped at 12,270 hectares.

Brolund added that rain Tuesday (Aug. 22) night, combined with increased humidity and cooler temperatures, is a boost in battling the blaze.

“Tuesday night was quieter than Monday and I’m hoping that continues. Yesterday and today (Aug. 23) is the first time we’ve seen the hills surrounding our community and does look pretty shocking.”

It was the first significant rainfall in the Central Okanagan since July 25.

While Brolund is thankful that the public continues to call 911 to report some flame and small amounts of smoke within the fire’s perimeter, he noted that fire crews are aware, and asked that residents call when they see unusual fire activity.

“We have members on the ground patrolling, however, if you see something outside of the fire’s perimeter, or if you see a significant amount of smoke or flame inside the perimeter, we need to have those continued to be reported to 911.”

There are 84 properties in West Kelowna and the Westbank First Nation that have sustained significant or partial damage.

Firefighters continue to directly attack the Walroy Lake wildfire in Kelowna (790 hectares) and the Clarke Creek fire (370 hectares) in Lake Country.

READ MORE: Wildfire evacuation orders/alerts to be downgraded in Central Okanagan

READ MORE: Message from Lake Country mayor to community and firefighters


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Gary Barnes

About the Author: Gary Barnes

Journalist and broadcaster for three decades.
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