Residents encouraged to be ready for change in White Rock Lake Wildfire

Wednesday, August 4, 2021 - 1:15pm

News Release No. 6, Central Okanagan, B.C. – While there is no change in the Evacuation Order and Alert for areas of the Regional District of Central Okanagan (RDCO) for the moment, the White Rock Lake wildfire is showing aggressive behaviour. Residents in alert areas should be prepared to leave on short notice if conditions in the area change.

Information on the status of current Evacuation Orders and Alerts and a map showing the impacted area is available on the RDCO Emergency program website cordemergency.ca. Any change or update in this information will be available on the website, social media channels, emailed to those who have e-subscribed and through local media.

The current Evacuation Order affects 544 properties in the Westshore Estates subdivision off Westside Road and rural areas to the west. Residents are reminded that it is unsafe to be in evacuated areas and their presence can put emergency operations personnel in harm’s way. RCMP are patrolling within the evacuation area and will be requesting residents leave immediately. Structural fire crews are also in the area conducting assessments.

Another 2,400 properties along Westside Road are under Evacuation Alert, south of Westshore Estates to the Bear Lake Main Forest Service Road intersection just north of Traders Cove. The alert area also includes all public lands located north of Bear and Esperon Forest Service Road. Drivers should be aware the area is restricted to local traffic only. Should fire conditions change, all people on alert must be prepared to leave their home or campsite on short notice.

Information on emergency preparedness is available at cordemergency.ca/beprepared and through Emergency Preparedness Canada. If leaving your home due to a wildfire and it is safe, take the following action:

  • Close all windows and doors in the house.
  • Cover vents, windows, and other openings of the house with duct tape and/or precut pieces of plywood.
  • Park your car, positioned forward out of the driveway. Keep car windows closed and have your valuables already packed in your car.
  • Turn off propane or natural gas. Move any propane barbeques into the open, away from structures.
  • Turn on the lights in the house, porch, garage and yard.
    Inside the house, move combustible materials such as light curtains and furniture away from the windows.
  • Move all combustibles away from the house, including firewood and lawn furniture.
  • Evacuate your family and pets to a safe location.

The latest information from the BC Wildfire Service lists the fire as out of control, estimates the size as 32,500 hectares and 8.5 km from Westside Road. For updates on the status of the fire, visit the White Rock Lake wildfire webpage on the BC Wildfire Service website.

Emergency response personnel request that the public:

  • Leave areas under an evacuation order immediately.
  • Avoid the area so emergency responders can safely and effectively perform their duties.
  • Report an emergency, including threat of life, by calling 9-1-1.
  • Report wildfires at *5555 on your cell phone
  • Visit cordemergency.ca for up-to-date information on evacuations alerts and orders within the Central Okanagan, including a map and to sign up for e-updates
  • Find updates on twitter.com/CO_Emerg and facebook.com/CORDEmergency
  • Contact the information line at 250-469-8490 or 1-877-569-8490 toll-free with questions

Emergency operations staff will release any new information to the public and media as soon as it becomes available.