PENTICTON, B.C. — The majority of people forced to flee their homes last week because of a wildfire in British Columbia's south Okanagan region are allowed to return home.
Officials from the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen said at a new conference Tuesday that an evacuation order for all but 74 of the 319 properties in the Heritage Hills neighbourhood east of Skaha Lake has been lifted.
Personnel are still confirming the safety of retaining walls and slope stability in the northern part of the neighbourhood but are hoping to lift the remaining evacuation orders Wednesday.
The only remaining evacuation alert, which covered 116 properties in the upper Carmi area, was also rescinded.
The B.C. Wildfire Service said good weather has helped firefighters working to contain the blaze, which is now mostly a smouldering ground fire.
Dennis Rexin, deputy incident commander for the fire, said crews are making good progress toward containment and resources will be reduced soon as favourable weather conditions are expected.
"There's nothing in the immediate forecast that's of concern," he said.
The Christie Mountain wildfire scorched more than 20 square kilometres of land on the east side of Skaha Lake and destroyed one home last week.
The wildfire service says 217 firefighters are on-site with support from a dozen helicopters and four water tenders.
On Monday, an evacuation alert was lifted for nearly 3,700 properties in Penticton, where residents had been advised they should be prepared to leave at a moment's notice.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 25, 2020.
The Canadian Press