Rare Lightning Storm

Rare Lightning Storm

Photo by: Matt Van Emmerik


A rare lightning storm rolled in to and “Sat” over Kelowna on August 10, 2011 challenging all of our resources.  We responded to over 90 incidents in a four hour period from power outages to wildfires.  The Kelowna Firefighters, BC Ambulance Service, Kelowna RCMP, BC Forestry Service, City Of Kelowna, Fortis, and many others accepted the challenge and fought hard to maintain public safety throughout the service area.  Flooding was reported in many areas as well as a road washout at Crawford and Dehart Rd’s.  Below is a brief breakdown of the incidents reported.

  • 22 Flooding reports
  • 2 Marine Rescues
  • 6 Wildfires
  • 10 Smoke sightings
  • 1 Hazardous Materials Ammonia Leak
  • 27 Fire Alarms
  • Multiple Power Outages
  • Multiple lightning strike reports
  • Road washouts
  • A Fire at the Delta Grand
Kelowna Deputy Fire Chief Jason Brolund says, “Our four dispatch staff worked under incredibly demanding conditions to process over 400 telephone calls from the public, including 125 9-1-1 calls in less than four hours. In this same time period, over 700 radio transmissions were also sent and received from emergency responders in the field.”
“The Kelowna Fire Department wishes to thank all who were involved alongside us in the response to this extraordinary event this evening. Crews from the RCMP, B.C. Ambulance and City Parks, Roads and Utilities and other emergency dispatch centres all worked closely to process and respond to calls in priority sequence as quickly and efficiently as possible. Crews continue to follow up on flooding reports, smoke sightings and spot fires late this evening.” Says Brolund.

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