Three fires merge with Alkali Lake blaze

Telegraph Creek wildfire now at 118,000 hectares

Three more wildfires merged with the Alkali Lake blaze near Telegraph Creek Tuesday, increasing its size to an estimated 118,000 hectares. The Muddy Lake, Lovell Creek South and Tahltan River fires were fuelled by extremely dry terrain and northward winds reaching 80 km/h.

“It created volatile fire activity,” said Heather Rice, on-site fire information officer. “It did draw the fire a little bit more to the north but Telegraph still remains well guarded with structure protection.”

The fire is 11 per cent contained against structures and infrastructure around Telegraph Creek.

READ MORE: Trudeau pledges to close gaps between cities, First Nations on wildfires

Outside the village, cabins or small buildings north of Lovell Creek may have been impacted but at this time BCWS is not aware of any losses.

Several days ago, structures in Tahltan Village were also impacted, according to BCWS. The Regional District of Kitimat Stikine cannot confirm the extent of damage at this time.

Today, part of the firefighting efforts are focused on the southern flank of the blaze slowly moving toward the community of Glenora. BCWS said the dry terrain is allowing the fire to back south into the winds.

Glenora is now a high priority for firefighters. Helicopters have been called to the area while ground crews work on structural protection.

An evacuation order remains in effect for the area. An evacuation alert now stretches to within a couple kilometres southwest of Dease Lake.

READ MORE: Prime Minister visits wildfire crews as hundreds of blazes burn in B.C.

Despite any setbacks, BCWS says the fire activity was “a little quieter” overnight with crews keeping to 24-hour shifts, minimizing the fire’s growth.

“It’s hard work for the crews,” information officer Amy Reibe said. “They’re putting in long hours and are really focusing on structures and culturally sensitive areas that are important to the community.”

BC Hydro has restored to Telegraph Creek as efforts to clear and grade Hwy 51 are ongoing.


 


quinn@terracestandard.com

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The total hectares of the area between Kitimat and Terrace outlined on the map is 57,510 hectares. That is roughly half the size of the Alkali Lake wildfire.

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