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Wildfire in Oliver caused by sparks from power pole being worked on

The blaze on Oliver Mountain grew from 1 to 4.5 hectares but is now held

The fast moving fire that erupted on Oliver Mountain close to the high school was caused by sparks from a power pole being worked on Monday.

According to Oliver Fire Department’s Rob Graham, a Fortis crew was working on a pole at a construction site. A couple of wires arced and caused some sparks to ignite some grasses on fire.

The fire that started around 12:30 p.m. quickly spread up the mountain. Within two hours, the fire grew from one to 4.5 hectares, according to the BC Wildfire Service.

Luckily, by 3:45 p.m., BCWS said the fire was held because of the quick actions of firefighters on the ground and helicopters in the air bucketing water on it.

Original: 1:45 p.m.

A fire has erupted near homes on the town of Oliver.

Residents posting pictures to social media of flames and large amounts of smoke say it is coming from Oliver Mountain near the water reservoir and high school.

At 1:30, BC Wildfire Services had listed the fire as two hectares in size and started at 12:30 p.m. at Tower Hill.

By 2 p.m. the fire had already grown to three hectares. They have updated to say that the blaze is human caused.

Helicopters have been bucketing the fire since it was called in and firefighters are on the ground.

Caroline White took pictures of flames above her home on Kootenay Street.

The Western News will update this story as information comes in.

READ MORE: BC launches task force to deal with climate change wildfires

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Monique Tamminga

About the Author: Monique Tamminga

Monique brings 20 years of award-winning journalism experience to the role of editor at the Penticton Western News. Of those years, 17 were spent working as a senior reporter and acting editor with the Langley Advance Times.
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