The Cummings Creek wildfire near Sparwood, pictured on August 12 2022. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

The Cummings Creek wildfire near Sparwood, pictured on August 12 2022. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Area restriction rescinded for Cummings Creek fire, west of Sparwood

The Cummings Creek fire was previously downgraded from a wildfire of note

The BC Wildfire Service has rescinded the area restriction for the Cummings Creek wildfire, to the west of Sparwood.

“As the fire behaviour and activity has decreased, firefighting personnel no longer need to restrict public access to operate efficiently and safely in the area,” reads a Friday August 26 update.

“The BC Wildfire Service reminds members of the public that the Cummings Creek wildfire is an active worksite, and they should exercise caution at all times while travelling in the area. Even if an area restriction has been rescinded, officials still have the authority under the Wildfire Act and its regulations to order anyone to leave the area.”

The public are warned that the fire-affected area will still have safety hazards, such as unstable trees and ash pits that remain hot.

Smoke is expected to linger within the fire perimeter for weeks.

“Smoke appearing from within the fire perimeter and burned material is common; however, smoke that rises from green, unburned fuel or from outside a fire’s perimeter should be reported immediately,” reads the release.

The Cummings Creek wildfire is located 5km west of Sparwood, in an area locally known as the Wilson Draw. The fire grew to over 50 hectares over August.

It started on August 3 from a lightning strike, and was designated a wildfire of note due to its proximity to Sparwood. Over 40 firefighters attended the area, creating a perimeter to protect the community if needed. They were unable to attack the fire directly due to steep and inoperable terrain.

The fire was downgraded from a wildfire of note on August 22, with fire crews being redeployed to other fires due to the fire burning into wetter areas, and limited growth.

READ MORE: Cummings Creek fire near Sparwood to be downgraded



scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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