Editor, The Times:
To the citizens of the communities of Blackpool and Clearwater, Blackpool Fire would like to thank you for supporting us.
The worst of times brings out the best in our communities. So far we have been able to avoid a serious event that threatened our valley.
The folks from BC Wildfire Service did an outstanding job in holding the fire from advancing further north and appear to have a good hold on it.
We know they have lots of work yet to do and hope the weather will cooperate more. Although we remain on an evacuation alert at this time, it is hoped it will be lifted soon.
Blackpool Fire would like to recognize those landowners and farmers who put out additional irrigations systems and provided our crews with access to their farmlands to close the fire front on the Blackpool side of the valley for patrols.
In particular the Phil Johnston farms, Jit Dhillon farms, Hans and the team at the Wadlegger family farms, Dave and Vivian Spedding, Les and Janis Scarff, Mike and Dawn Purdy of Lacarya Golf Course, and to all those other individuals who put out sprinkler and irrigation when the fire was at its worst.
Those efforts were noticed, were much appreciated and played a large part in our attack strategy plans had the fire crossed over into Blackpool.
Thanks to our outside area fire departments of Merritt and Barriere for their trucks and crews and to our mutual aid partners at the Clearwater firehall.
To our business community partners: Thank you to Kinder Morgan, who provided our department with an additional fire pump and water cannon, and took tremendous steps to help FireSmart and protect their compound and surrounding properties. Thank you to On Call Services, who had water trucks with large volumes of water ready to go if we called.
Thank you to Buy-Low Foods, Pharmasave and Tim Hortons, who ensured that our responders were supplied with additional food and beverages, helping all of us to be ready during the 24-hr patrols shifts.
Thank you to all the members of the community who stopped by the hall to talk to our crews, dropped off baked goods and expressed their thanks to the crews for being there.
Thank you to the many employers that allowed our volunteer firefighters to be away to man the hall and trucks over these long hour periods.
Thanks to the Thompson-Nicola Regional District emergency operations staff, TNRD Area A director Carol Schaffer and District of Clearwater’s Mayor Harwood, councillors and staff for their support.
And finally a special thanks to our families, who supported us over the long hours.
Scott Thomas, Blackpool Fire chief
Mike Savage, Blackpool Fire deputy chief
Dietrich Rempel, Blackpool Fire assistant chief