Train brakes spark fruitvale wildfire

A series of small wildfires were sparked by a Burlington Northern (BNSF) train in Fruitvale late last week.

By Sheri Regnier, Trail Times

A series of small wildfires were sparked by a Burlington Northern (BNSF) train in Fruitvale on Friday afternoon.

The train had just left Atco Wood Products headed toward Trail when sparks created six small grass fires, said Kootenay Boundary Fire Rescue regional fire chief Terry Martin.

Nine firefighters were called out to extinguish the fires, which began by the Petro Canada station on Main Street and spread sporadically for about one kilometre toward Trail, he said. All fires were extinguished in under two hours, and no structures were threatened.

However, the BC Ambulance service was called to treat one firefighter at the scene for heat exhaustion.

Martin said that once the firefighter was cooled down, he was released back to the crews and assisted further with the clean up.

Although sparks from the brake systems on a train are not uncommon, the cause of Friday’s incident is under investigation by BNSF.

This was a rare occurrence and something we don’t expect to see again,” explained Martin.

Members of the railway were on site to check and run the line all the way down to Columbia Gardens to ensure that no more fires were started. At this point, we don’t know why the fires were started but it is being investigated by the railway.

The plume of smoke from the grass fire sparked 10-year-old Zack Cure and his friend Nathan Doherty into action. The boys were playing by the Petro Canada station when the train went by.

I didn’t see the fire part but I saw all the smoke,” said Cure.

The fast thinking Grade 5 boys ran to the gas station and alerted the attendants to call 911 to report a fire.

Although Cure didn’t stick around to watch the firefighters extinguish the flames, he was rewarded by the Petro Canada ladies with a treat later in the day.

They called me a hero and gave me a free Slurpee,” he said.

Although there are no current fires in the Boundary zone, Jordan Turner, fire information officer for the Southeast Fire Centre, said that the fire danger rating is moderate to high across southeast B.C., with several pockets of extreme rating near Creston, Cranbrook, Nakusp and Revelstoke.

To report a wildfire or unattended campfire call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 from a cell phone. For more information on wildfire activity, visit bcwildfire.ca.

 

 

Just Posted

Elk River reclaims property as its own

Laws make it harder to protect private land than ever before says farmer, local government

Smoke-free summer a boon for West Kootenay tourism

Tourism centres seeing numbers up

Black Press Kootenay Career Fair underway in Cranbrook

Today, Thursday, August 22, around 40 employers will be waiting to meet potential new employees

National trail group decries province’s plans for West Kootenay trail

Converting trail back to motorized use will harm its international reputation, says official

Cannings to pedal through South Okanagan — West Kootenay riding

MP leaves from Nakusp on Aug. 23 and ends in Kaleden on Aug. 29.

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

Groups ready campaign to help young voters identify ‘fake news’ in election

The media literacy campaign to focus on identifying misinformation and suspicious sources online

Big rally in northern B.C. draws attention to continuing lumber crisis

Mayor Joan Atkinson says about 400 workers have been directly affected by the closure of the Canfor mill

Orangeville Northmen take Minto Cup at Langley Events Centre

Swept best-of-five series 3-0 over Victoria Shamrocks

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

UPDATE: Crown cross-examines B.C. father accused of killing daughters

Andrew Berry is charged in the deaths of six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey in 2017

Dog attacked by river otters, Penticton owner says

Marie Fletcher says her dog was pulled underwater by four river otters in the Penticton Channel

BC SPCA overwhelmed with cats, kittens needing homes

Large number of cruelty investigations, plus normal ‘kitten season’ to blame

Most Read