An evacuation alert was issued at 5:30 p.m. Saturday (July 30) for around 350 properties in the Apex Mountain Village and surrounding areas being impacted by the Keremeos Creek fire near Penticton.
The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen also issued new evacuation orders Saturday evening for more properties on Green Mountain Road and the north end of Sheep Creek Road.
To see the full list of addresses under evacuation order click here.
To see the map and addresses under evacuation alert, click here.
On Saturday, under very hot conditions, the wildfire displayed aggressive and erratic behaviour, and is now estimated to be 440 hectares in size, according to BC Wildfire Service.
There are now 45 BC Wildfire Service personnel responding on the ground, including initial attack, unit crew and parattack personnel.
According to the wildfire service, the fire is unable to be reached by either heavy machinery or air tankers because of the steep, low terrain.
Air tankers are currently on standby.
Structure protection has been deployed to properties in the immediate vicinity of the wildfire, with support from multiple local fire departments, but one structure has already been lost.
This wildfire remains highly visible to Penticton and surrounding communities. Green Mountain Rd. is closed but Highway 3A remains open at this time.
A smoky skies bulletin has been issued for the South Okanagan and Environment Canada posted a special air quality statement on Saturday afternoon for Penticton, Summerland, Naramata, Keremeos, Oliver and Osoyoos. The weather agency says poor air quality is expected until at least Sunday or Monday.
For those being evacuated, here is what you need to know:
You must leave the area immediately.
- Follow directions of emergency responders and travel designated or safest route available
- Register online at ess.gov.bc.ca
- For ESS support by phone, call 250-486-1890
- Due to a shortage of commercial/hotel accommodation, consider making arrangements to stay with family or friends if possible
- Take pets with you if you can
- If you need transportation assistance, call RDOS EOC at 250-490-4225
- Gather your family; if you have room, take a neighbour or someone needing transportation
- Do not use more vehicles than you have to
- Do not turn off your natural gas. FortisBC will turn off natural gas service as needed.
- Store your firearms in accordance with Section 118 of the Firearms Act
- Close all windows and doors
- Close gates (latch) but do not lock