Fernie and Hosmer firefighters responded to and contained a grass fire in the Hosmer area on Wednesday, Apr. 13 2022. (Image courtesy of Regional District of East Kootenay)

Emergency responders contain Hosmer-area grass fire

A slash pile fire got away from a contract crew working in the area

Firefighters from Fernie and Hosmer were called to contain a grass fire in the Hosmer area on Wednesday (Apr. 13) afternoon.

According to Elk Valley and South Country Rural Fire and Rescue chief Michael Hockley, the fire, which was along Dicken Rd, was human-caused.

“A contract crew was cutting and burning slash piles on private property,” he said. “The fire got away on them and spread quickly into the grass.”

Hockley said it was a good example of how quickly environmental conditions could change in windy conditions. At this time of year, fires can spread quickly as dead undergrowth from last season dry out after the snow melts, and before new vegetation begins to grow.

“We can’t stress enough the importance of being prepared and choosing to burn only when conditions are favourable.”

The fire was quickly contained and extinguished by firefighters, with no property damage reported.

“Preparation and safety need to be the top two priorities before doing any outdoor burning, including having a water source, shovel or tools, burning when it’s not windy and staying on site monitoring the fire until it is completely out,” said Hockley.

“This very easily could have been a much more serious situation, and it’s critical that people take the proper precautions every time they are burning.”

READ MORE: Elk Valley RCMP investigating workplace death

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