British Columbia's Thomas Creek Fire Forms Huge Pyrocumulus Cloud

A massive cloud from the Thomas Creek Fire loomed over Okanagan Falls, British Columbia, on July 14.

Local news reports said the smoke formed a “pyrocumulus cloud,” also known as a flammagenitus cloud – a vertical column produced as extremely hot temperatures force air up into higher altitudes where it cools and creates condensation, according to NASA.

Thirty firefighters and six helicopters battled the Thomas Creek fire, which had reached 5,000 hectares (about 19 square miles) and was classified as “out of control” as of July 15, the British Columbia Wildfire Service said.

Video filmed by local resident Dolly Ferrier shows the cloud and several helicopters working to fight the fire on Wednesday. Credit: Dolly Ferrier via Storyful

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