Update: 5:38 p.m.
The Emergency Support Services reception centre is now open to assist the estimated 1,100 people on evacuation order for the Philpott Road wildfire.
So far about 50 families have registered at the centre.
Update: 4:15 p.m.
FortisBC says it is updating the its website FortisBC.com to help customers in the Philpott Road fire area. It says customers can view its online outage map or follow us on Twitter for updates.
The company says it is working with emergency officials to assess damage from the Philpott Road Fire in the Joe Rich area of Kelowna and determine the impact on the FortisBC electricity system.
To ensure public safety, we have interrupted service to approximately 2,500 customers in the area.
Once the area has been made safe and the necessary repairs to FortisBC infrastructure has been made, we will have a clearer idea of the estimated restoration time.
If customers have any concerns or to report a natural gas emergency or power lines down, they can call our customer service line directly:
Natural gas emergencies: 1-800-663-9911 (24 hours)
Electricity emergencies or power outages: 1-866-436-7847 (24 hours)
The Central Okanagan Emergency Operation Centre says an evacuation order for the Philpott Road wildfire has been issued for the entire area of Joe Rich, from Walker Hill on the Highway 33 western boundary of the City of Kelowna to Big White Road to the east and Mission Creek and Joe Rich Creek along the south.
This affects approximately 474 properties and an estimated 1,100 people.
A detailed map showing the affected properties within the Evacuation Order area will be available at www.cordemergency.ca.
Structural fire crews from the Joe Rich, Kelowna, Ellison and Lake Country departments are involved in fighting the blaze that was reported shortly after 1:30 this afternoon. As well, crews from the BC Wildfire Service are fighting the blaze.
An Emergency Support Services reception centre is being set up at Willow Park Church, 439 Highway 33 West in Kelowna. ESS volunteers will be available starting at 5:00 pm to help affected residents.
New information will be released as soon as it becomes available.
Emergency response personnel request that the public:
Avoid the Highway 33 area so emergency responders can effectively perform their duties
Monitor cordemergency.ca for confirmed information about the situation
Please only CALL 9-1-1 in case of emergency
Earlierinthe afternoon, the RCMP evacuated the following areas:
Sun Valley Road
Cardinal Creek Road
Philpott Forest Service Road
Three Forks Road