LETTER – Interface from Highland Road to Juniper Ridge Park is a firetrap
Early April 25th I received an email regarding new projects and updates available on Let’s Talk Kamloops. As part of the email there was a brief information outline on the FireSmart Program, including a link to the FireSmart online page:
FireSmart™ is living with and managing for wildfire in your area and on your property. Becoming wildfire resilient is a shared responsibility across BC. As the City continues its fuel management treatments, residents are encouraged to embrace and initiate FireSmart actions to reduce the risk of fire in their homes, properties, and neighbourhoods.
To ask a question, request a free assessment, or apply to be your neighbourhood champion, visit the FireSmart page.
Knowing one of the worst areas (at least in my opinion) is up in Juniper Ridge, just after 10am I emailed Let’s Talk Kamloops back, and copied the Mayor and one city councillor, with the following:
I received this email today and noted the information about the Fire Smart program.
I have to say that one of the WORST locations for a fire to cause significant damage is the interface between the top of Highland Road, headed East along Qu’Appelle Boulevard, and continuing to the corner just past Juniper Ridge Park.
This area, of ‘city’ property, is loaded with multiple layers of extremely dry grasses and dry pine needles.
Given there are a large number of homes that would be at high risk, should a fire break out, I would like to suggest this be a high priority for the city to clean up.
It is also worth noting that this area is alongside the main exit route for a large part of the subdivision. If and when a fire breaks out, this could create chaos for those trying to flee the subdivision.
Thank you for your attention to this matter, and I look forward to hearing your response.
Sincerely … Alan Forseth
As you can see in the images here, it is pretty easy to see what a firetrap this area is … and has been … for a number of years now.
It’s now been two days and I’ve yet to hear back from the City of Kamloops regarding this matter – even simply acknowledging receipt of my email – but hopefully someone will get back to me soon.
As if anyone gives a damn. You should see the heat trap the city has created with the monster house five feet from my eastern property line. At 25 feet high by 60 feet long it traps afternoon sun and has stopped any air circulation that used to cool my front yard . In Aug the temp in my front yard hit 44 degrees . Thats without a heat dome .It could hit 50 this summer . And the city says they will protect seniors from extreme heat . For ant semblence of privacy I also am forced to plant pyramid Cedars between the houses. Thanks Kamloops . Thats some protection.
Hoping the city responds to your request to clean up the area you referred to in your letter. It does look like a fire trap.
I an surprised your Neighbourhood Association has not raised the issue. Perhaps they have.
Maybe a neighbourhood work bee could get rid of some of the dead materials. I would suggest prior to the Neighbourhood Garage sale that has been planned so well for years. Just a thought. As many Neighbourhood Associations do many volunteer activities throughout our community.
To be fair, at 11:30 last night (Apr 26) I did receive the following response from Councillor Nancy Bepple:
Thanks for connecting and raising your concerns.
I will be forwarding your email to staff responsible for fire protection and ask them to respond to you directly. I know that, as you say, fire mitigation is a key part of fire protection and this is undertaken on an ongoing basis. They will be able to speak to this area in particular.
The area is one of a few like it and the issues are ongoing and building…
I live near Kenna Cartwright park and I use the park as much as I use my own house. More over, I cycle regularly all over the place near and around town. Do I see issues, new and recurring issues, which should be addressed by the City but are not despite making them aware on multiple occasions in certain cases? As another example of their unprofessionalism and carelessness, did you see how the City has completely neglected the wellness of very many iconic trees in in Riverside park recently? Mr. Trawin and team should disappear ASAP and replaced by someone with a much more caring attitude towards our city. Someone new, with a broad competence and a vision. Above all, a council elected on competence and not on popularity would help.