Bush Creek East wildfire poses challenges for firefighting crews

The BC Wildfire Service has revealed that crews battling the Bush Creek East wildfire are facing difficulties due to the fire’s irregular perimeter. The fire, which has spread across 41,806 hectares of land, has affected areas west and east of Adams Lake, north of Shuswap Lake and Little Shuswap Lake, and south of Highway 1 between Chase and Sorrento.

According to Mike McCulley, a fire information officer with the BC Wildfire Service, the fire’s shape with its long tentacles and fingers makes it particularly challenging to combat. Crews are cautious about placing themselves in areas surrounded by fire, prioritizing the safety of their team members.

In the past 72 hours, the fire hasn’t grown due to cooler weather and higher humidity. Longer nights are expected to aid efforts as well. However, fire behavior is anticipated to intensify with temperatures reaching up to 30°C over the weekend.

On Friday, numerous crews, equipment, and helicopters with buckets were deployed to fight the fire. Good progress has been made on various flanks, with guard construction and mop-up being done in areas such as Little Shuswap and Adams Lake. Monitoring is taking place on properties near Scotch Creek and Lee Creek, while structure protection is ongoing in Magna Bay and Celista. Crews are also working on building a guard to the east of Sorrento using heavy equipment.

McCulley mentioned that the risk of the fire may not be visible nearby, as fire crews often prioritize areas that pose a significant threat rather than immediate surroundings. Indirect attack strategies are employed to mitigate risks to properties. McCulley urged residents to trust that crews are working diligently to address the fire, even if they may not be within sight.