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Massive Canadian Wildfires 2017

Jetzguy 

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Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 28 July 2017 - 00:58 CET

Our area of Canada is under massive attack from forest fires at this time. Over 45,000 people have been ordered to evacuate their homes. The fires are still burning out of control and more are igniting each day. With a long very hot fire season ahead of us I can only hope for some rain and some good luck for our people.

Here are a few shots of the fires I took while under evacuation order. I am one of the lucky ones and was recently allowed to return to a home that is still standing.

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Oliver Louis 

Full member
Joined in January 2015
Posts: 33
Posted 28 July 2017 - 15:18 CET

Terrifiying pictures. Beautiful landscape in the foreground, sea of flames in the background...my thoughts to all people who have to leave their homes.

Dmitry Yakovlev 
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Joined in April 2013
Posts: 17
Posted 28 July 2017 - 20:24 CET

Dramatic and frightful view! such a calamity for the forest, wildlife and people... Hope the rains will come soon.

By the way, what is the purpose of colouring the water that is dropped over the fire? Or is it some fire extinguishing agent added to the water that colours it?

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 28 July 2017 - 21:53 CET

Fire retardants applied to wildfires are usually a mixture of water and chemicals designed to wet the area as well as chemically retard a fire's progression through the vegetation. Typically it is colored red so that the application area can be seen from the air. Phos-Chek is a brand of long-term retardant currently approved for wildland fire use. Some retardant acts as a fireblock as well as fertilizer to aid in growth after the fire is out. You can see how visible they are from the air for the water bomber pilots.

As you can see from these pictures the retardant lines stopped the triangle fire from spreading. The yellow Electra seen dropping in front of the advancing flames is building a fire guard to prevent the fire from spreading further down the mountain. The last one of the P-3 dropping is simply building a fire guard to protect a building.

A side note is that retardant drops are always ahead of the fire not on them. They do not put the fire out. They can only help contain or slow the fire's advance or movement. If they can steer the fire towards a lake, away from a home or into a forest with no homes it is a huge benefit even if they are unable to stop the fire at that time.

Water drops from aircraft and helicopters are used to directly fight the fire to put it out, to cool it down so ground crew can fight it in safety or to wet down areas directly ahead of the fire to prevent it from from combusting. To make the water more effective they can added foaming agents to make the water hold together and last longer before it dries up or runs off.

PS I obtained these 3 photos from the web to illustrate. I did not take them personally.

Thanks guys for your comments.

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Lars van Zundert 

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Joined in March 2016
Posts: 26
Posted 30 July 2017 - 02:05 CET

Wow, that's awful. Unfortunatelly my holiday to Canada was cancelled due to these wildfires. Hope everything will be alright in a short amount of time.

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 30 July 2017 - 19:39 CET

Fireboss reloaded and turning to hit the beast behind him.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 1 August 2017 - 19:42 CET

Loading up for another 3100 L water drop.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 7 August 2017 - 21:25 CET

A Fireboss air tanker on floats passes the raging wildfire at close range. Note the flames reflected on the aircraft. A Lockheed L-188 Electra water bomber is seen operating at low level under a nasty fire plume approaching for another retardant drop.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 10 August 2017 - 06:10 CET

A pilot controls his main rotor to prevent damage from other helicopters rotor wash as they land to refuel. After a quick lunch it is back to work fighting the raging wildfires.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 12 August 2017 - 20:52 CET

Some current wildfire pictures from our area. Over 300 structures lost so far and sadly, more to come.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 12 August 2017 - 22:32 CET

This poor guy...he was ok...then some embers landed starting a grass fire ahead of the main fire and that was the end of that cottage. Wildfire is a lot like war. Either it's your time or it's not. Sometimes there is not much you can do when wind and weather take over. The lucky guy to the right still stands after a massive deployment of water from the local fire department and BC Wildfire crews. They saved 770 homes in the area that day. Great work guys!

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 15 August 2017 - 20:03 CET

This is just one of the massive wildfires raging in our province right now.

Last updated: Tuesday, August 15, 2017 at 7:36 AM

Location: Cariboo Region of British Columbia Canada

Fire Size: 163,221 hectares or 403,327 acres!!!

Resources:

• 613 firefighters

• 23 helicopters

• 135 pieces of heavy equipment (bulldozers etc)

The firefighters include BC Wildfire Service, out of province, out of country and contract crews. Airtankers are assisting ground crews. There are structure protection personnel (local fire departments) through the Office of the Fire Commissioner working on this fire.

Nigel Paine 
Full member
Joined in November 2008
Posts: 53
Posted 16 August 2017 - 16:13 CET

403,000 acre fire........ I think my home county is about 440,000 acres and trying to imagine a fire that large and attempting to control it is truly mind boggling. Hope things pan out OK for you, Jetz.

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 16 August 2017 - 17:54 CET

Thanks for the comment and good wishes Nigel.

Another fire near by:

Last updated: Monday, August 14, 2017 at 9:47 AM

Size: 193,894.0 hectares or 477000 acres.

Another fire:

Last updated: Tuesday, August 15, 2017 at 6:00 PM

Size: 121,759.0 hectares or 300000 acres.

Heavy smoke all the time and 30 plus degree Temps for almost 6 weeks now. Our worst fire season ever. Over $300 million spent so far this summer fighting the beasts. We need Darko Meretic and his Croatian fire crew to come over and help :-)

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 16 August 2017 - 18:12 CET

News story:

British Columbia is poised to face its worst wildfire season as flames scorch thousands of hectares of land and costs rise to deal with the devastation. BC Wildfire Service spokesman said an estimated 8,450 square kilometres of forest, brush and grassland has been burned since the start of the wildfire season on April 1. 154 wildfires are burning across the province and the firefighting price tag has passed $309 million. The largest wildfire now covers 2,120 square kilometre.

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 16 August 2017 - 18:19 CET

An overview of BC showing the various fires.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 20 August 2017 - 06:24 CET

Some more fire coverage.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 August 2017 - 20:00 CET

Hundreds of firefighters and dozens of aircraft are working to contain the largest wildfire ever recorded in British Columbia's history. Nineteen wildfires have merged creating a single blaze that's estimated to be more than 467,000 hectares (1,153,982 acres) in size according to the B.C. Wildfire Service. This massive fire stretches 130 kilometres from one end to the other. It is now so big the wildfire management branch has set up two incident command teams to manage the fire. One at the Northern and one at the southern end to co-ordinate the firefighting efforts of more than 400 firefighters, 25 helicopters and dozens of pieces of heavy equipment and air tankers. Crews are making progress fighting the fire but because of its size it's expected to continue burning for some time. I have attached some photos of the ongoing firefighting from around the province.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 August 2017 - 20:03 CET

Some more fire fighting action.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 August 2017 - 20:06 CET

BC Wildfire Crews at work.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 August 2017 - 20:15 CET

Some heavy air tanker action photos I was able to find.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 August 2017 - 20:21 CET

The Canadian Air Force is helping out with a number of aircraft including two CC-130J Hercules, two CH-147F Chinook helicopters and three CH-146 Griffon helicopters. They are used to carry crews and equipment around the province as well as to perform search and rescue duties for firefighters or homeowners that become trapped by rapidly changing wind and fire conditions. In one photo above you can see a Chinook bringing in a load of food for a village cut off from food supplies. Some indian band members stayed behind when the area was evacuated as they wanted to fight the fires and try to save their homes. They managed so save quite a few structures when the BC Wildfire crews were overloaded and unable to assist or were cut off by fire from reaching their areas.

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 3 September 2017 - 18:45 CET

Our wildfires are still out of control and burning huge portions of our province. This is the worst fire season on record. 1,198 fires so far with over 2,734,764 million acres burned. There are 3,841 firefighters and other personnel currently fighting the fires including 686 wildfire crew from out-of-province (some from out of country including Australia, Mexico, USA) and 1,528 contracted crew. There are 188 helicopters and planes supporting ground crews at this time. We have spent well over $400 million dollars so far this summer directly fighting the fires. With over 300 homes and buildings burned this cost will be much higher.

The Plateau fire is now 1,246,696 acres in size.

The Hanceville Riske Creek fire is now 589,210 acres in size.

The Elephant Hill Fire is now 461,592 acres in size.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 3 September 2017 - 18:52 CET

Canadian Military support working with the RCMP and other police to enforce evacuation orders and protect property during the evacuations.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 12 September 2017 - 02:25 CET

Some more Canadian Armed Forces crews in action assisting with our fire season from hell. A nice welcome home from the military, RCMP and other enforcement agencies that helped.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 16 September 2017 - 02:09 CET

Emergency Management BC said 509 structures have been burned so far this summer including 229 homes. There are still 155 fires burning in BC and 11 evacuation orders are in place affecting more than 3,000 people. Cooling temperatures and rain in the forecast should reduce the severity of these blazes heading into the fall and winter seasons.

Over 11,900 square kilometers of land has been burned since April 1 which is the largest area burned in the province's history. BC Wildfire said $518 million has been spent fighting the fires so far this year.

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 18 September 2017 - 06:47 CET

Life in the smoke.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 22 September 2017 - 21:01 CET

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Corporal Janelle Shoihet says officers are patrolling communities and helping to guide livestock out whenever possible. In a few cases officers have fed their lunches to animals to ensure they weren’t hungry. Officers have rescued dogs, cats, horses, pigs, llamas, mules, a cockatiel and even a red tail python from fire-affected areas.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 22 September 2017 - 21:04 CET

This couple were forced out by the raging wildfires. Their wedding plans were ruined so the military and fire fighters helped set them up for a wedding at the fire camp.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 22 September 2017 - 21:07 CET

A wildfire that started alongside Hwy 97 highway in Lake Country nearly got out of control. Quick work and some luck saved the town.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 23 September 2017 - 17:07 CET

A Fire Boss air tanker approaches the lake for another fill. 3100 liters per drop every 6 minutes. Quite effective for a smaller aircraft. I had to keep cleaning the lens of spray after each aircraft passed overhead at 50ft.

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Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 53
Posted 3 October 2017 - 02:45 CET

Thankfully our worst ever wildfire season is finally over!!!

1,290 Fires

2,996,160 Acres burned

Around half a billion dollars spent fighting the fires.

Thanks to everybody who commented on this thread as well as the people who took time out of their busy lives to view it more than 1200 times. Your involvement and interest has been very much appreciated.

I will end with a photo of plant life recovering after the fires and a photo of our province as fall settles in and the colors change in the cool weather. So much beauty after the storm has passed. Stay safe.

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