This summer, dry and hot weather conditions have created additional challenges and considerations for our province. While emergency response crews work hard to manage wildfires occurring in our region and across BC, our team continues to provide important information to visitors, residents, and local businesses to keep them updated on local conditions, and to help them make informed decisions and stay safe.
We extend our sincere thanks to the dedicated frontline responders working hard to keep our community safe.
What can Your Business do to Help?
Wildfires impact locals, visitors, and businesses in many ways and can potentially affect or influence those who may travelling or be planning a trip to our province. Here are some things you can do to help:
- Only share information from official sources—refer to the links and key messages that follow to keep visitors and locals informed.
- Use #RealTimeKelowna to provide an accurate, ‘real time’ view of current conditions. Be sure to include the date and time the image or video was taken.
- Help your customers as much as possible. Many will be seeking information on local conditions or flexibility with their reservations or bookings. Do what you can to help each other.
- Share the link to our Current Conditions in Kelowna webpage, which includes a live feed from our webcam located at the Kelowna Visitor Centre that can be viewed anytime, and to our Outdoor Safety webpage.
- Share information and updates about your business by tagging us—and using #exploreKelowna—on social media and by contacting our Visitor Experience Team so we can keep visitors and residents informed.
- Know before you go. The current wildfire situation in British Columbia can change quickly and it’s important to be prepared and remain alert to stay safe. Information regarding wildfires in our region is available on the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations website (cordemergency.ca); there you can also subscribe to receive updates via email. Tourism Kelowna has compiled additional resources on the Current Conditions page of their website and their visitor experience team is available to answer questions. Please continue to stay informed through official information sources that are providing important updates for your safety.
- Please make safe and responsible decisions. We have a shared responsibility to ensure the safety of the communities we live in and visit. We’re asking everyone to do their part, be mindful of the conditions, and make safe and responsible decisions. Please follow the guidance from any emergency response personnel in place and adhere to any alerts or orders in place. Please stay clear from any areas where a response effort is underway to help emergency responders do their important work.
Stay Safe, Stay Informed
Sharing information from official sources only is extremely important during emergency situations, like wildfires. Below are official resources where you'll find reliable, up-to-date information that can inform your team, visitors, and locals. Be sure to distribute these resources to your team members and follow the social media accounts listed throughout for the most current information.
Our Current Conditions in Kelowna webpage—which is now easily accessible through a banner at the top of our website—provides a variety of useful links, including contact information for our Visitor Experience team, and displays #RealTimeKelowna views from our webcam at the Kelowna Visitor Centre. Information on wildfire prevention and safety can be found on our Outdoor Safety page.
Visit cordemergency.ca for information on any current emergencies, including wildfires, in the Central Okanagan Regional District. Follow Central Okanagan Emergency Operations on Twitter.
PreparedBC has created step-by-step guides specific to the tourism industry, linked below, which will help ensure you and your team are ready in an emergency situation.
PreparedBC's social media channels:
- BC Wildfire Dashboard: An interactive map of all active wildfires across the province.
- Wildfires of Note: Listings by fire centre, with additional information on each wildfire of note.
- Fire Bans and Restrictions
The BC Wildfire Service's social media channels:
BC residents who are forced to evacuate in the event of an emergency (i.e. fire, flood, etc.) can self-register for assistance and support through the BC Emergency Support Services website.
Provides current and forecasted air quality information, as well as health messages for the current conditions.
Find information about road closures, major events, and transportation delays. Follow DriveBC on Twitter.
Information regarding Provincial campgrounds and park closures.
BC Parks' social media channels:
Information regarding closures at regional parks can be found on the Regional District of the Central Okanagan website.
Alerts, closures, and warnings regarding BC’s rustic campsites and recreational trails.
Resource for the latest weather information, statements, and air quality advisories.
- Evacuees can register with the Red Cross by calling 1-800-863-6582, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PST. Follow Red Cross BC & Yukon on Twitter.
If you have questions or need further information about Tourism Kelowna's marketing and communications activities during wildfire season, please contact Director of Marketing & Communications, Chris Shauf at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (250) 861-1515 ext. 203.