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Vernon ESS Reception Centre closed, will take in evacuees Saturday morning

The reception centre will reopen at 9 a.m. Saturday
Mats and blankets greet wildfire evacuees at the ESS reception centre at Kal Tire Place in Vernon. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

The Vernon ESS Reception Centre is closed for the night, but it will resume taking in evacuees from a number of raging wildfires in the Central Okanagan in the morning.

The Reception Centre, located at Kal Tire Place Arena (3445 43rd Avenue), will open at 9 a.m. Saturday.

The City of Vernon issued a number of reminders for evacuees and the community in general in a press release Friday night, Aug. 18:

• All evacuees should register online at

• Hotel accommodations are very limited within the region. If evacuees are able to stay with family or friends, please do so.

• The Province of B.C. ESS program is available for residents who have been evacuated from their primary residence only. Tourists and visitors to the area who have been evacuated are asked to return home, if possible, or find their own alternative accommodation.

• For up-to-date road information, check

Check and for information and updates on Central Okanagan wildfires, and evacuation orders and alerts.

One evacuated couple from Fintry said they waited for hours at the Vernon Reception Centre but didn’t get helped.

“We have to go back tomorrow. We are sleeping in our car unfortunately.”

Information on Vernon’s ESS Reception Centre and the city’s emergency response is available at

READ MORE: BC SPCA taking in pets of wildfire evacuees, deploying more staff in Thompson-Okanagan

READ MORE: B.C. declares state of emergency over wildfires

Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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