Fire ban in place across BC

Posted July 16, 2017

Evacuation alerts and orders have been pouring in since May 19, 2017, with the most recent one as of Monday, July 10, 2017 for Princeton, Cariboo, and McBride Road in the Fraser-Fort George areas.

After a couple of relatively quiet days, the B.C. wildfire situation is expected to worsen through this weekend.

There are now 167 wildfires burning in British Columbia.

"It looks like that has worked in most of these incidents in creating a fuel-free area", he said, adding that high wind speeds could still move embers beyond the controlled areas, spreading the fires.

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There are still thousands of people who have been forced from their homes, and Robert Turner with Emergency Management BC says that number is now inching closer to 17,000.

An evacuation order was issued Saturday morning for the remote Clisbako area in the Cariboo region.

Many businesses in Williams Lake have already shut down due to a lack of customers.

Hundreds of fire-suppression crews were standing by within an hour of the community and military personnel were ready to assist with mass evacuations, if necessary, he said. Officials have not said how many people are affected.

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Since the fire season began in April, more than 616 blazes have consumed 1,140 square kilometres of land, forcing officials to order evacuations affecting 16,680 people.

Some staff has already apparently chose to leave the region, not waiting on the official evacuation alert to be upgraded to an official order.

"Unfortunately, significant rain continues to elude the southern half of the province for the foreseeable future", Environment Canada said. Anyone going into the backcountry is urged to use extreme caution, especially if operating off-road vehicles as their exhaust systems can and do start forest fires. The Gustafsen fire (5,000 hectares) and Little Fort fires are 20 per cent contained, and the Wildwood fire (2,500 hectares) is about 40 per cent contained.

They are located in the Prince George region, around Kamloops, Harrison Lake East, and the Cariboo.

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