84 new Kootenay wildfires caused by lightning strikes

84 new lightning-caused fires in the last week have spawned two new major wildfires in the Kootenays sparking evacuation alerts along Highway 6.

Evacuation alert issued for residents in 2800-3000 block of Highway 6 due to Slocan Park fire

The Slocan Park fire shown here was burning over 120 hectares on Friday August 8. Fire officials warn the fire hazard is high to extreme in Southeastern B.C. (B.C. Wildfire Management Branch)

84 new lightning-caused fires in the last week have spawned two new major wildfires in the Kootenays where some residents along Highway 6 have been placed on evacuation alert.

The Slocan Park fire has reached 120 hectares in size, causing an evacuation alert for residents of Slocan Park and Crescent Valley from 2826 to 3021 on Highway 6. 

The B.C. Wildfire Management Branch says there are 60 firefighters and six helicopters working the fire.

The Whitetail Brook fire, eight kilometres east of Canal Flats, is about 1,700 hectares in size but is 50 per cent contained according to B.C. Wildfire Management.

Six helicopters and 110 firefighters are fighting that fire.

The fire danger rating in most of Southeastern B.C. is 'high' with large areas of 'extreme' fire danger.  The forecast over the next week calls for more hot, dry weather and the potential for more thunderstorms on the weekend.

The Wildfire Management Branch is asking the public to be extra cautious in the backcountry as the branch already has its hands full with naturally-caused fires.

MAP: Canal Flats, Slocan Park, Kootenay District, B.C.

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