Wildfire training may create smoke south of Vernon

A two-hectare controlled fire is a component of the field training for Canadian Forces personnel.

KAMLOOPS – Smoke and flames from a wildfire training exercise may be visible in the Predator Ridge area southwest of Vernon and along Highway 97 on the weekend of March 22-23.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations is offering the S-100 Basic Fire Suppression and Safety course to approximately 35 Canadian Forces personnel in the Vernon Fire Zone.

A two-hectare controlled fire is a component of the field training that will build on techniques learned in the classroom. Trained firefighters and equipment will be on site at all times to ensure that the fire remains within its designated area. If weather conditions are not favourable, the burn will not be conducted.

Interagency co-operation between the Department of National Defence and the Wildfire Management Branch is mutually beneficial. The course prepares military personnel to be ready to assist during times of extreme fire activity. The last time the military was called upon to assist the Wildfire Management Branch was during the 2003 fire season.

All wildland firefighters in B.C. are required to successfully complete the S-100 Basic Fire Suppression and Safety course before being deployed on a wildfire. Upon completion of the course, participants will successfully have demonstrated wildfire suppression and safety skills, worked with fire equipment and received an introduction to fire behaviour.