A fire in the backyard of a Keremeos property got out of control Monday evening, requiring the support of the local fire department. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media - FILE)

Suspected backyard burn turned grass fire extinguished by Keremeos Fire Department

About half an acre of property burned as a result of the blaze, Monday, July 27

A fire in the backyard of a Keremeos property got out of control Monday evening, requiring the support of the local fire department.

At 6:49 p.m. Monday (July 27) the Keremeos Fire Department responded to a grass fire on a property in the area of Ashnola Village Rd.

Down the driveway, the fire department saw several people with garden hoses attempting to knock the fire down.

“We knocked it down and continued to mop up the hot spots,” said Keremeos Fire Department deputy chief, Brian Helm.

About half an acre of property burned as a result of the blaze.

Crews believe the resident was attempting to burn some sage brush from around the area, but wind picked up and caused the fire to spread.

Fire conditions in Keremeos, Helm explained on Tuesday, are getting worse every day with the recent heat wave.

“Things were looking reasonable there until the end of last week. With this recent heat wave coming through (things are) drying out really quick,” he said.

READ MORE: Osoyoos hottest spot in Canada, summer sun sparks heat warnings across B.C. Interior

With fire conditions worsening, Helm encouraged the public to be safe. Currently in the Kamloops Fire District, opening burning is prohibited, but campfires are still allowed, for now.

“If you don’t have to burn, don’t,” said Helm. “It’s not a good time to burn. It’s the hottest conditions of the year, and it’s unpredictable with the wind.”

To view current fire bans visit: Bcfireinfo.for.gov.bc.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/DisplayBan.asp?ID=575#OpenFireBans.

The fire department also recently received a grant which helped them acquire a second bush truck, and this incident Monday was the first time they were able to use it in a real situation.

Crews are grateful they were able to test it out in a situation that wasn’t extremely stressful.

“It was something easy to get the guys used to running two trucks at once,” said Helm.

The grant, totalling $25,000, allowed crews to purchase a new pump, hoses and bladder for the truck.

READ MORE: Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department receives $25k grant


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