Okanagan Fire crews have recently encountered, and are currently engaging, a blaze near the Okanagan Connector between Peachland and West Kelowna. According to details provided by Fire Information Officer, Kelsey Winter, the Drought Hill Fire spread very quickly and has now expanded up to 30-hectares in size.
Winter explained that “it’s mostly just because of the hot weather. It’s also in grass and open timber… a lot of dry, dead needles on the ground. So, that really increased fire activity. It was also burning upslope.” The firefighting has resulted in evacuation of a nearby home. According to Winter, there is also a chance of Highway 97 (Okanagan Connector) being shut down if conditions get worse. Winter elucidated that “if we increase air and ground operations, we may shut down another lane of the highway. But right now, it’s open.” According to fire officials, the fire is believed to have been ignited by an abandoned campfire or a lit cigarette.