2003 Okanagan Mountain Park fire

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2003 Okanagan Mountain Park fire
Date(s)August 16, 2003 (2003-08-16)
LocationOkanagan Mountain Park
Burned area25,912 hectares (64,030 acres)[1]
Land useParkland, rural
Non-fatal injurieswater bomber crash
Structures destroyed239
Causelightning strike
Perimeter of 2003 Okanagan Mountain Park fire (map data)
Fire damage visible in background of Rattlesnake Island

On August 16, 2003, at about 4 a.m. local time, a wildfire started via lightning strike near Rattlesnake Island in Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park, British Columbia, Canada. The wildfire was fuelled by a constant wind and the driest summer on record up to that time.[2] Within a few days it grew into a firestorm.

The fire spread northward and eastward, initially threatening a small number of lakeshore homes, but quickly became an interface zone fire and forced the evacuation of 27,000 residents, consuming 239 homes. The final size of the firestorm was over 250 square kilometres (25,912 ha or 64,030 acres).[1] Most of the trees in Okanagan Mountain Park burned, and the park was closed.

60 fire departments, 1,400 armed forces troops and 1,000 forest fire fighters took part in controlling the fire, but were largely incapable of stopping the disaster.

There were also a number of aircraft used in an attempt to extinguish the fire, including three private Canadair CL-215s, four Government of Alberta owned Canadair CL-215s, four private Lockheed L188 Electra air tankers and at least one Martin Mars air tanker. Amateur radio operators assisted during the emergency.

That total cost was estimated at $33.8 million.[1]

Links to news articles[edit]

[3] [4] [5] [6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Fire Review Summary for Okanagan Mountain Fire (K50628)" (PDF). BC Wildfire. Government of British Columbia. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
  2. ^ "BC's Year of Disastrous Weather - fires, floods and freezes". Environment Canada. Government of Canada. 18 December 2009. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  3. ^ "The Okanagan Mountain Park forest fire: Ten years later". CBC.ca. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  4. ^ "10 years later: Remembering the Okanagan Mountain Park fire (Gallery)". GlobalNews.ca. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  5. ^ PROCAYLO, NICK. "Okanagan Mountain Park fire, then and now". TheProvince.com. Archived from the original on 22 January 2018. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  6. ^ "okanagan mountain park fire - Google Search". www.Google.ca. Retrieved 21 January 2018.

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