Ashcroft Fire Rescue battling a grass fire sparked by a vehicle on Highway 1 south of Ashcroft on Aug. 8. Crews are currently battling two more fires on Highway 1 near the Red Hills rest area south of Ashcroft on the Trans-Canada. Photo: Submitted

Firefighters battling two blazes on Highway 1 south of Ashcroft

Highway has reopened to single-lane, alternating traffic led by a pilot car so expect delays

UPDATE 7 p.m.: Firefighters from Ashcroft and Cache Creek are beginning to return to quarters after tackling two fires on Highway 1 south of Ashcroft.

Forestry has 20 more crew members on their way to continue mopping up and to monitor the sites.

Traffic is still single-lane, alternating. An update on when the highway fully reopens will be at www.drivebc.ca.

Drivers should maintain caution in the area.

*****

UPDATE 6:30 p.m.: Highway 1 south of Ashcroft has reopened to single-lane, alternating traffic led by a pilot car, as crews work to contain two fires that started in the area earlier this afternoon.

Drivers should expect delays, obey all traffic control personnel, drive cautiously through the area, and be prepared for the highway to close again at short notice if conditions change.

BC Hydro is on site to assess the condition of hydro poles in the vicinity. Firefighters from Ashcroft and Cache Creek are working on the fires close to the highway, while forestry personnel are at work on a slope above the site.

*****

Highway 1 south of Ashcroft is closed as Ashcroft Fire Rescue, the Cache Creek Volunteer Fire Department, and BC Wildfire Service battle two fires beside the Trans-Canada Highway near the Red Hills rest area.

Crews were called out to the two fires just before 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 17. The northernmost of the two fires was estimated to be 20 metres wide by 200 metres long, while the southern fire involved two BC Hydro poles on fire. One of the pole fires has been doused, with crews working on the second.

A tender from Ashcroft Ranch is on scene, and a bird dog and two other planes are overhead, with BC Wildfire crews en route.

Drive BC still shows highway 1 open, but police have closed it in anticipation that retardant might be used. Check www.drivebc.ca for highway updates, and plan to use an alternative route.

Ashcroft Fire Rescue has already dealt with two vehicle fires along Highway 1 south of Ashcroft in the lest three weeks. The causes of both current fires are not yet known.

READ MORE: Fires on Highway 1, CN mainline keep Ashcroft firefighters busy



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