The smoke which blanketed Nelson on Monday morning came from wildfires in Washington State and the Okanagan.

The smoke which blanketed Nelson on Monday morning came from wildfires in Washington State and the Okanagan.

Haze over Nelson originates south of border

The haze hanging over the Nelson area Monday morning came courtesy of wildfires in Washington State.

The haze hanging over the Nelson area Monday morning came courtesy of wildfires in Washington State.

The huge Sunday afternoon thunderstorm that blew through the West Kootenay brought with it plenty of lightning, but as of Monday morning there were no forest fire starts as a result.

“We will be sending out air patrols later this afternoon to check for any other activity,” said Southeast Fire Centre information officer Karlie Shaughnessy.

The large fires in Washington state are located about 110 kilometres south-west of Grand Forks. The jet stream is responsible for carrying the smoke north. Shaughnessy said those fires pose no threat to communities or forests on the Canadian side of the border.

By Monday morning, the wildfire near Peachland grew to 200 hectares. Some of the smoke could also be coming from that blaze.

Smoke from the fires is expected to continue settling in the southern portions of the west and east Kootenays, as well as in the Boundary region. The Wildfire Management Branch advises anyone who is having trouble breathing to visit a medical professional.

The public is reminded that Category 2 and Category 3 open burning and fireworks use are currently prohibited throughout the Southeast Fire Centre. Check http://bcwildfire.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/Bans.asp for the latest news on burning restrictions.

For information on current fires of note in BC, go to bcwildfire.ca. To report a wildfire or unattended campfire, please call *5555 on your cell phone or 1-800-663-5555 toll-free.