British Columbia

Peachland house fire destroys 1 home, becomes wildfire

At least one house was destroyed southwest of Peachland on Saturday by a fire that spread into the countryside.

B.C. Wildfire Service says fire is just under 1 square kilometre in size, no longer out of control

An image of the McCall Creek wildfire burning four kilometres southwest of Peachland on June 26, 2021. (BC Wildfire Service)

At least one house was destroyed by a house fire southwest of Peachland, B.C. on Saturday.

Peachland Mayor Cindy Fortin said the fire broke out earlier on Saturday at a property on Marantha Drive near Princeton Avenue. It then spread into the countryside.

Multiple fire departments responded to the fire. The B.C. Wildfire Service has 31 people working on the fire along with one helicopter after it spread into the nearby countryside. The service said the fire is currently about one square kilometre in size and is being held by fire suppression efforts.

The Regional District of the Central Okanagan said that all properties along Marantha Drive were evacuated. People forced from their homes went to the Peachland Community Centre for support and help before they were allowed to return back home later Saturday evening.

Other homes in the area were placed under an evacuation alert for several hours before the alert was also rescinded.

'Pins and needles'

Fortin said Saturday was one of the hottest days she had ever experienced in the more than 30 years she has lived in the community — temperatures reached 40 C on Saturday.

"I've been on pins and needles like everyone else. We've faced a lot of fires," she said.

"It's very hot but I feel confident that fire crews are on this and they are knocking it down as fast as they can, and they're going to do their very best. And hopefully, it won't get any other houses and everybody will be safe and it will be over quickly."

Ashcroft fire

Meantime BC Wildfire crews responded to another wildfire on Saturday two kilometres east of Highway 1 near Ashcroft.

The service said three firefighters, a helicopter and the local fire department were also working to contain a fire that started as a house fire and then spread into the countryside nearby.

The BC Wildfire Service says that fire is 3.5 hectares in size.