Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Premier John Horgan visited Williams Lake yesterday to get a first-hand look at the battle against the wildfires and to meet with first-responders and residents. Trudeau said be was impressed not only by the caliber of the folks on the ground responding, but also the connections between different levels of government, Indigenous leadership and the RCMP and Armed Forces. 825 fires have scorched about 426,000 hectares of the province since April.
A 21 year old man was arrested after police say he was spotted setting fires along Harvey Avenue on the weekend. Calls to 911 reported a man using a blowtorch to set anything on fire that he could. A portable billboard along with the landscaping were damaged.
Just over 100 firefighters from Mexico are on their way to British Columbia to help give some relief to the battle-weary firefighters here. As of yesterday there were about 3,700 personnel and 200 aircraft under the control of BC Wildfire. So far this is the third-worst season on record in terms of area burned and there is still at least another month to go. A heatwave is expected later in the week and no rain is in the forecast.
The Kelowna RCMP is continuing the investigation into Sunday afternoon’s fire on Knox Mountain. Initial reports were that the fire was intentionally set and an unknown person was observed walking away from the scene. Police are hoping that anyone who may have seen something or someone above the second lookout about the time the fire started about 2 o’clock, will call them or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.
BC Wildfire speculates the smoke that drifted into the valley yesterday came from to the south and east of us and if the breeze changes it could blow in from the central interior. There is a large fire burning just south of the border in Washington State and the number of fires in the Kootenays right now.
With temperatures forecast to hit the mid to upper 30s around here this week, WorkSafeBC is reminding employers and outdoor workers to play it smart. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include excess sweating, dizziness, fainting and muscle cramps. They suggest a glass of water every 20 minutes, wear light-coloured, loose-fitting clothing made of breathable fabric such as cotton and take rest breaks in a cool, well-ventilated area.
The history of the Okanagan Valley will be easier to discover thanks to a project launched by UBC Okanagan’s Library and various regional organizations. A private foundation has donated more than $94,000 which will result in the digitization of thousands of photographs and documents held in archives and museums throughout the Valley. They should be available online sometime this fall.
BC Cancer Foundation door-to-door canvassers are out right now introducing residents to the monthly donation program. They wear ID badges and BC Cancer Foundation purple vests but WILL NOT accept cash or one-time gifts at the door. If you sign up for a monthly donation, you will receive an immediate email confirmation.
Kelowna -West MLA Christy Clark spoke to the media for the first and probably last time since announcing she was leaving politics. Clark said she knew it was time for her to leave and for the Liberals to renew, but she’s proud of accomplishments like job creation, contracts with the public sector and protecting areas such as the Great Bear Rainforest. Clark will be cleaning out her office on Friday.
At the Canada Games in Winnipeg, West Kelowna’s Brock Hoel just missed out on a medal, placing 4th in the triathlon. BC has one gold and 2 silver medals so far and is in 3rd place behind Ontario & Quebec.
Los Angeles has reached an agreement with international Olympic leaders that will open the way for the city to host the 2028 Summer Games. Tokyo will host the 2020 games and it looks like Paris will get the 2024 summer Olympics.
Blue Jays begin a three-game series in Chicago last night. Toronto had a 6-0 lead going into the 7th and ended up losing 7-6.
Seattle Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor is optimistic about reaching a contract extension soon. He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent after the 2017 season.
Rory McIlroy has apparently parted ways with his longtime caddie J.P. Fitzgerald after nine years. McIlroy is playing in Akron, Ohio this week for the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, and won’t comment on the situation until tomorrow.