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Surge in wildfire evacuees keeps Vernon emergency centre open late

ESS reception remaining open until 7 p.m. tonight
The White Rock Lake fire near Falkland has seen hundreds of residents evacuated. (BC Wildfire Service photo)

As wildfire evacuees continue to leave their homes, Vernon is extending the welcome mat into the night.

The City of Vernon ESS Reception Centre will be extending its hours of registration until 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 5.

This is a temporary change of operation for the centre to assist evacuees.

“The centre has extended hours beyond the 4:30 p.m. scheduled close to address an anticipated surge of evacuees,” the city said in a press release. “Hours will fluctuate based on expected demand and fire activity.”

The centre will close at 8 p.m. to provide a rest break for volunteers and staff who are working exceptional hours to support those in need. Volunteers and staff will return to the centre early Friday, Aug. 6 and reopen for evacuee registration at 9:30 a.m.

Vernon’s centre is receiving residents who are being evacuated due to the White Rock Lake Fire being directed to register in Vernon.

For those attending the reception centre, note:

• All evacuees should register online with the ESS Evacuee Registration & Assistance (ERA) tool even if you do not require referrals such as housing or other services:

• Due to a shortage of hotel accommodations, please consider making arrangements to stay with family or friends, if possible.

• Please do not bring pets into the reception centre. Pets should stay outside of the centre with an owner while another member of the household registers for service referrals.

READ MORE: Recent residents of Falkland shocked by wildfire evacuation order

READ MORE: Okanagan Indian Band expands evacuation alert due to White Rock Lake wildfire


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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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