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UPDATE: Report of fire at Skutz Falls turns out to be ‘smoke chase’

State of Local Emergency remains in effect for Mount Prevost fire
A new wildfire is being reported in the Cowichan Valley at Skutz Falls on Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021. (Screenshot from BC Wildfire Dashboard)

It was suspected that a third wildfire was burning in the Cowichan Valley on Saturday afternoon, Aug. 7, at Skutz Falls, however the Coastal Fire Centre said it ended up being nothing.

A representative from the Coastal Fire Centre said that a fire was reported, but when crews went out to find it, the call ended up being what they call a “smoke chase”, meaning they could locate no blaze.

Two other fires continue to burn in the Cowichan Valley on Saturday afternoon, one in Chemainus River Provincial Park, which is suspected to be person-caused and is under control, and one near Holyoak Creek which expanded overnight to 32 hectares and is burning out of control. An evacuation order has been issued by the Cowichan Valley Regional District to one property on Mount Prevost Road due to that fire. The CVRD has also declared a State of Local Emergency due to that fire, which is burning on the north slope of Mount Prevost in Electoral Area E and the Municipality of North Cowichan.

The CVRD said on Saturday afternoon that rain last night has helped in the effort to stabilize the fire, however the terrain is challenging as the fire is on a steep slope amidst third growth forest.

The CVRD reported that there are currently 30 firefighters working to douse the blaze and five helicopters, along with other heavy ground equipment.

The CVRD Regional Emergency Operation Centre is monitoring the situation in partnership with the Municipality of North Cowichan and Halalt First Nation.

More information as it becomes available.

Andrea Rondeau

About the Author: Andrea Rondeau

I returned to B.C. and found myself at the Cowichan Valley Citizen.
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