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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since last Sunday, my community has lived in the "shadow" of a major wildfire a few km away to the south (http://bcwildfire.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/Situation.asp?Mode=normal&ID=192) - several rural homes are under evacuation alert, a few have been evacuated, we watch the winds & smoke daily, hoping, praying & beseeching that the fire does not come our way. We are also surrounded by fires to the west, north and east, at varying distances, with periodic road closures. On Wed. morning around 9:30, the power went out, & it turned out to be due to a fire destroying part of BCHydro's infrastructure serving our area (http://www.bchydro.com/news/2007/aug/release52989.html). At that time, it looked as if the power would be out for at least a week, if not longer. All stores & businesses closed, including the bank, except for the local PetroCan station which was running its pumps off a generator (thank you!), allowing us to get enough gas with our remaining cash to drive to a town 45 min. away to fill up, & to lay in a stock of batteries, candles, canned goods, etc. Fortunately, our town still had water, as there is a back-up generator wired in at the pump house that starts automatically if the power goes out.

And, fortunately, the phones were still working!

I took my trusty laptop with me, & charged up the batteries at an internet cafe - even though my internet was down (a wireless ISP, no power, no transmission) because it was just way too scary to be without, & I could get access via a friend's dialup, to check my emails. But no IM, no surfing - for an unpredictable period of time. I certainly missed being in touch … my spice observed that my noticeable tension abated as soon as I connected at the internet cafe: got my fix, felt less isolated, doing the familiar soothed me!)

Yea, Hydro got the power back on a mere 36 hours after it went down - & now we have "just" the fire threat & smoke & ash in the air to deal with. Now we know precisely what bits & pieces we need to be ready for emergencies, & we have made the list of exactly what to take if we are evacuated (instruments, photos, important papers, etc.) & have made sure they are accessible.

It was a very nervous adventure - & really it's not over yet, since the fires still burn.

I HATED not being able to connect to ehmac.ca !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Palindromic Pooch
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Hope the situation continues to improve for you and yours. I recently spent six days without ehMac, on a planned camping trip, and, at least in that regard, I feel your pain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Kazak - thanks for the thoughts. Here's the update, even though we do now have power:

"30 B.C. Interior homes evacuated as wildfire jumps fireguard …
Last Updated: Friday, August 3, 2007 | 2:50 PM PT CBC News

RCMP officers are ordering 30 Slocan Valley families to evacuate their homes immediately to escape a rapidly spreading wildfire in the southwestern Interior of B.C. On Friday morning the Springer Creek fire jumped a fireguard in its northwest corner.

Police are asking people south of Enterprise Creek to head toward Slocan City, while those living north of Enterprise Creek will be evacuated to the Knox Hall in New Denver. Sprinklers are being used to protect 21 buildings and Martin Mars water bombers are being used try to prevent the fire from spreading into inaccessible areas … Fire information officer Gwen Eamer said the blaze grew significantly overnight and covered an estimated 15 square kilometres late Friday morning.

The province has closed Highway 6 just south of New Denver in the Slocan Valley because an eight-kilometre stretch was threatened by the wildfire.

The big challenge for ground crews on Thursday was extremely poor visibility due to a lot of smoke that's settled in the Slocan Valley.

Forest Service Fire Information officer Rosalie MacAulay said at one point this morning the wildfire was burning within 100 metres of the highway and burning material was landing on the highway.

Highway 6 in B.C.'s southern Interior will not reopen until the fire calms down, the transportation ministry says. Drivers can use an alternate route, Highway 31A, between New Denver and Kaslo."

I live in the middle of all this - current evac alert ends 6 blocks south of my house. I'll be working in the EOC beginning Monday if the situatioin remains the same. Hoping to not have to evacuate, but my laptop is the second item (following only my musical instruments) on my list of things to pack.
 
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