Tree falling on transmission power line sparks spot fires in Saanich

Tree falling on transmission power line sparks spot fires in Saanich
Robert Townsend/submitted
A tree falling on transmission power lines sparked spot fires on Sept. 11, 2023.

Saanich fire crews were able to douse flames sparked after a tree fell on a transmission power line on a farm in Saanich Monday night.

BC Hydro says a cottonwood tree fell on the transmission power line on a Saanich farm, and crews made the site safe. Transmission power lines are the lines that move electricity from the generating station to distribution substations, where it is then transformed to lower voltages for customer use.

Restoration work is planned for Tuesday, and a vegetation crew is on-site removing the tree and assessing other nearby trees to determine if they need to be removed.

The company says there were no power outages as a result.

Rob Galey, of Galey Farms, says the incident happened on his farm, and luckily no one was injured and damage was minimal in the resulting spot fires.

He says the area nearby had peat soil so the potential to spread was high.

“We took it seriously,” he told CHEK News in a phone interview. “And Saanich fire flooded the grounds and they did a great job.”

Vancouver Island is currently under a Level 5 drought, which is the highest level on B.C.’s drought rating system. On the South Island, the fire danger rating is rated as high.

RELATED: ‘Lowest in my lifetime’: Cowichan River at slowest flow as drought intensifies

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