Blanket Creek campers rocked by explosions

The Devine family (left to right) — Ryan, Ross and Evelyn (with dog, Lucy) — were among campers shocked by explosions across the river from Blanket Creek Monday morning. Brennan Storr photo

By Brennan Storr

Campers at Blanket Creek suffered a rude awakening Monday morning when, at 9 am, an explosion rang out from across the Columbia River. The powerful blast rocked trailers and, according to one camper, “blew the citronella candle right off our table.”

According to campers up to fivemore blasts followed with the final sounding out around 11 am.

Ryan Devine, of Edmonton, was still in bed when the first blast went off.

“We thought a trailer had blown up,” says Devine. “It echoed across the whole valley.”

Campers received no advance notice of the blast and Dave Kaegi, the Park Facility Operator with WildLand Consulting, which manager Blanket Creek, said that his organization was similarly uninformed.

According to Gerald Hills at the Revelstoke office of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations, the ministry investigated the explosions in response to a number of complaints. Hills said the blasting took place on Crown Land, seven kilometers along the Akolkolex Forest Service Road and was undertaken by a private company engaged in road construction.

Hills was not certain whether such companies are legally required to issue advance notice of blasts to residents of surrounding areas.

Brennan Storr is a writer and blogger. You can find out more about him at his blog, Largely The Truth.