An evacuation alert has been issued for the St. Mary Valley.

Evacuation order issued for St. Mary Valley

On Thursday evening at 8 p.m., the Regional District of East Kootenay issued an evacuation order for residents of the St. Mary Valley.

“High winds and an increase in fire behaviour have prompted the BC Wildfire Service to recommend the RDEK issue an Evacuation Order,” said EOC Director Terry Balan. “Our first priority is public safety. These decisions are not made lightly and everyone within the evacuation order area needs to leave immediately.”

The Evacuation Order is in effect for the St Mary’s Lake area from the West boundary of the City of Kimberley to the Redding Creek / St Mary’s River convergence including St Mary’s Lake Road and Lakefront Road as outlined on the map associated with this order.

An emergency reception centre was set up at Centennial Hall last night.

Residents were asked to leave the area immediately and proceed to Centennial Hall.

Mayor Don McCormick did not have any information on what conditions were up the valley at 9 p.m. last night but did say it was the Meachen Creek fire.

“Centennial Hall is the muster station right now and we are getting things set up,” he said. “People can stay there if they have to, although most people who live up the valley will have friends and relatives they can stay with.”

You can get up to date news on the St. Mary Valley evacuation order at kimberleybulletin.com, rdek.bc.ca and kimberley.ca, and on all three Facebook pages.

Pursuant to the Emergency Program Act (RS, 1996, Chap 111), an Evacuation Order has been issued by the Regional District of East Kootenay due to immediate danger to life safety due to a wildland fire. Members of the RCMP will be expediting this action.

The Evacuation Order is in effect for the St Mary’s Lake area from the West boundary of the City of Kimberley to the Redding Creek / St Mary’s River convergence including St Mary’s Lake Road and Lakefront Road as outlined on the map associated with this order.

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO:

• You must leave the area immediately and you must not return until this order is

rescinded.

• Follow the travel route provided and register at the ESS Reception Centre located at

the Kimberley Centennial Center at 100 – 4th Avenue, Kimberley, BC.

• If you need transportation assistance from the area please advise the individual

providing this notice or call 250-489-9677.

• Close all windows and doors.

• Shut off all gas and electrical appliances, other than refrigerators and freezers.

• Close gates (latch), but do not lock.

• Gather your family: take a neighbor or someone who needs help.

• Take critical items (medicine, purse, wallet, and keys) only if they are immediately

available. Take pets in pet kennels or on leash.

• Do not use more vehicles then you have to.

• Do not use the telephone unless you need emergency service.

YOU MUST LEAVE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY!

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