Koocanusa west evacuation order downgraded to alert
As the BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) continues to make progress on the Linklater fire, the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) has rescinded the evacuation ORDER for the west side of Lake Koocanusa in the Newgate area and downgraded it to an evacuation ALERT (map pictured above).
The evacuation order was issued on September 2 for a number of properties in the Newgate area from Gold Bay south to the U.S. border including Sunshine Houseboats, Sandy Shores and Madera Ranch Campgrounds.
“The area remains under an evacuation alert and people should be ready to leave again at a moment’s notice should conditions worsen,” said RDEK Information Officer Loree Duczek. “This is the time for people to gather and remove valued items that they did not have the opportunity to remove when the evacuation order was issued,” stressed Duczek. “This includes boats, recreational vehicles and pets.”
Both Sandy Shores and Madera Ranch RV Resort will remain closed to the public until Friday, September 15 and can be contacted directly for details.
The Canadian Disaster Animal Response Team (CDART) is available to assist with both temporarily housing larger animals and reuniting owners with pets that may have been left in a residence during the evacuation.
“We have left a number of Red Cross clean up kits along with some information about returning to your home after a wildfire for anyone in the evacuation order that may need additional resources,” added Duczek. Kits and info packages can be picked up at the Sunshine Houseboat, Madera Ranch and Sandy Shores offices.
Residents are reminded that it is still an active fire area, so BC Wildfire Service personnel will continue to be in the area and areas may be marked off or blocked off.
In addition, the RDEK and Tobacco Plains Indian Band have lifted the evacuation ALERT for the east side of Lake Koocanusa in the Grasmere area (pictured above right).
The fire, which was sparked by lightning, is burning largely on the US side of the border in an area southwest of Newgate. The fire is estimated at 927 hectares in size on the Canadian side of the border and continues to be actively actioned by the BC Wildfire Service and its U.S. counterparts.
A map of the evacuation ALERT area is available on the RDEK’s website. The alert area includes:
- Newgate from Gold Bay south to the US border including Sunshine Houseboats, Sandy Shores and Madera Ranch Campgrounds.
The RDEK’s emergency information line is 250-426-2188 or toll free 1-855-346-2188 and updates are also available on www.rdek.bc.ca.