UPDATED: Protest erupts after B.C. Wildfire Service nixes sprinkler idea to combat large fire

People are blocking sprinkler trucks from leaving Burns Lake as fire crews look to other options

UPDATE: The truckers from Alberta have now left Burns Lake. According to Burns Lake councillor Charlie Rensby, the RCMP did not allow protesters to stop the truckers from leaving, and the protest has now moved to another location near the B.C. Wildfire Service base in Burns Lake.

A group of Burns Lake residents are protesting wildfire officials’ decision not to use a sprinkler system to combat a large group of fires in the area. They’re now blocking more than two dozen Alberta truckers from leaving the town.

The Albertan truckers brought fire suppression equipment such as sprinklers, pumps and hoses to Burns Lake to help combat the 8,500-hectare Babine complex fire on the south side of the community. The group of fires is zero per cent contained.

But the B.C. Wildfire Service says this particular high-capacity water delivery system isn’t going to work due to several factors, including the terrain and an insufficient water source.

In a statement Friday night, the fire service said the system requires close proximity to “very large bodies of water” in order to work.

“They also require relatively flat topography and are most effective in densely populated areas,” it said.

Fire crews are evaluating if the use of an alternate water delivery system could work to supress the blaze.

But Burns Lake councillor Charlie Rensby, who joined Saturday’s protest, said he and others were not convinced by this explanation.

“The biggest injustice is that politics is coming into play when we should be saving people’s livelihoods,” said Rensby.

More to come.


 

@flavio_nienow
flavionienow@gmail.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

White Rock rail forum leads to renewed calls for relocation

Upgrading safety is not enough say local politicians

McCallum says Surrey LRT communication plan close to election is ‘perceived interference’

McCallum ‘gravely concerned’ Surrey and TransLink will violate election financing rules, but city says all rules will be followed

White Rock’s Johnston Road to re-open on schedule: city

One lane in each direction expected to open by Friday at 7 p.m.

Two Surrey volleyballers set to play for Team Canada

Brianna Beamish and Kiera Van Ryk in Japan for FIVB World Championships

VIDEO: Neighbours fear impact of B.C. tent city residents

Greater Victoria residents opposed to campers voice concerns at provincial campground

Tornado touches down in Ottawa and Gatineau, Que.

Environment Canada says cars and homes have been damaged by severe thunderstorms and high wind gusts

B.C. premier apologizes for removal of 1950s totem pole at Canada-U.S. border

First Nations say pole was raised at Peace Arch but removed to make way for tourism centre

An unexpected sight: Bear spotted eating another bear in central B.C.

Cheslatta Carrier Nation Chief finds bear eating another bear’s carcass

Free vet clinic caters to pets of homeless, low income people

The first such clinic in Langley will take place later this month.

RCMP confirm death of missing BC teen Jessica Patrick

No details on cause were given. Case is under criminal investigation and police are asking for tips.

Extradition hearing set for Lower Mainland developer accused of fraud

Mark Chandler will go before the B.C. Court of Appeals early next year.

CUTENESS OVERLOAD: 2 sea otters hold hands at the Vancouver Aquarium

Holding hands is a common – and adorable – way for otters to stay safe in the water

B.C. teen with autism a talented guitarist

Farley Mifsud is gaining fans with every performance

Most Read