North Shuswap & Wildfires

North Shuswap & Wildfires

The Shuswap Emergency program staff, and indeed all CSRD staff are focused and very busy on the situation. With more than 7 larger wildfires and countless small conflagrations in the CSRD, the staff tell me they’ve never had to deal with this many before. And as they’re focused on those, they continue to monitor areas that are not in as much danger, such as the North Shuswap.

The recent alert for Chase is troubling but in looking at the maps of fires (https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/wildfire-status/wildfire-situation), the fire is still a long way from Chase. In discussions with the CSRD Emergency Program staff they note that Wildfire BC is using an abundance of caution in setting alerts and evacuation orders. We’ll have plenty of ‘alert’ and ‘evacuation order’ time prior to Squilax being cut off. Probably far more than we’d like.

Having said that, there are a number of alternate exits available to North Shuswap residents and visitors should we be cut off at Squilax. It’s interesting that right now we are in the middle of reviewing and updating our North Shuswap Emergency Exit plans, I look forward to that report when it’s available. In the meantime I can list a number of alternate routes:

–              Holding Road to Loakin-Bear Creek Rd. and through to Chase

–              Holding Road up to the Adams Lake mill and then West to Sun Peaks

–              Holding Road through to Barriere

–              Scotch Creek Forest Service Road (FSR)

–              Seymour Arm Main FSR through Seymour Arm to the #1

–              And also boat crossing of the lake at any given location

There is lots of information on the CSRD website (csrd.bc.ca), the Shuswap Emergency website (Shuswapemergency.ca) and the provincial wildfire homepage (https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/wildfire-status). I also recommend the Alertable app that you can download onto your phone.

Having worked with our Emergency Program staff and seeing the work they’re doing, along with the provincial Wildfire BC people, I believe we are in very good hands. My best advice to you is to write down your specific exit plan, have a list of items you need to be able to grab, and stay prepared.


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