Firefighters are battling a forest fire that broke out this morning at the top of Arbutus Ridge.
City of Port Alberni fire crews were able to get to the fire, just south of the cel towers, ahead of provincial forest fire fighting teams.
The fire, that was first spotted shortly after midnight last night, has grown to 2.1 hectares.
Fire Information Officer Donna Macpherson said they had to cancel air support this morning after a drone was spotted in the area
Macpherson said drones are prohibited within 5 nautical miles of a fire zone, and anyone who spots a drone within that area should immediately call police.
Meanwhile, the Lacey Lake fire continues to burn, and expanded yesterday to 10 hectares in size with Cherry Creek, Sproat Lake and Beaver Creek crews assisting provincial firefighters there.
MacPherson says they’re now watching the weather as a shift could bring some showers this weekend, but could also bring lightning.
The region’s new Director of Protective Services says forests are extremely dry right now, and people should just stay away from them.
Kelly Gilday says smokers need to be especially careful, as a discarded cigarette can easily light grasses on fire, and start a major blaze.
Due to the extreme fire risk, the Alberni – Clayoquot Regional District announced the closure of all area trails, including the Log Train Trail, Alberni Inlet Trail, and Mt. Arrowsmith trails.