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Breaking:: Province Plagued by Deteriorating Air Quality as Full Scope of B.C. Wildfire Destruction Remains Uncertain


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The latest on wildfires:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Sunday that the federal government is coordinating with the BC government in its response to the wildfires, as wildfires lead to poor air quality across the province.

Trudeau told a news conference that BC is facing an “extraordinarily dire situation” with extreme weather.

Thousands of people remain without their homes and are trying to cope with the loss of multiple properties.

Since Thursday, officials have confirmed the loss of homes and structures in West Kelowna and parts of Shuswap, but the full extent of the damage has not been counted as fires continue to burn in the province’s dry tinder forests, powered by wind, drought and hot weather.

CLOCK | Get the latest on wildfires in BC and NWT:

Get the latest on wildfires in BC and NWT | Breaking: Network

Breaking: Network provides continuous coverage of wildfires in British Columbia and the Northwest Territories. Watch it live here.

The province is in a state of emergency, and travel to inland southern BC has been restrictedpreventing tourists from using hotels, motels, RV parks, and other temporary accommodations in Kelowna and West Kelowna, Kamloops, Oliver, Osoyoos, Penticton, and Vernon, so they can be used for evacuees.

Provincial officials said on Saturday that 30,000 people have been told to leave their homes and another 36,000 have been told to prepare to leave at any time.

Highway 1, a main route through the province, is also closed in at least two places due to the wildfires.

CLOCK | Forest fires ravage communities across the province:

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BC crews dealing with wildfires ‘on an epic scale,’ says West Kelowna chief

Things are looking better. We finally feel like we’re moving forward instead of backward,” West Kelowna Fire Chief Jason Brolund said during a news conference.

On Sunday, Trudeau said on X, formerly known as Twitterthat he had approved a request from the BC government for additional support in handling the situation.

He indicated that military assets and other resources would be deployed to help with evacuations and other logistical tasks.

Firefighters await recovery in Kelowna

More than 10,000 of those evacuees are in the Kelowna region due to the McDougall Creek wildfire, which destroyed homes in the Central Okanagan.

Jerrad Schroeder, deputy fire center manager for the BC Wildfire Service’s Kamloops Fire Center, said Saturday was a good day for fighting the wildfires in the region, with hundreds of firefighters helping to put out the volatile fire.

“We were able to gain a foothold in establishing some lines of control with the use of heavy equipment,” he told a news conference.

CLOCK | West Kelowna Fire Chief Says Challenging Days Ahead:

1692565675 124 Breaking Province Plagued by Deteriorating Air Quality as Full

Wildfires in BC ravage homes and communities across the province

British Columbia authorities said 30,000 people have been told to leave their homes and 36,000 people to prepare to leave at any time. BC Forest Fire Service spokesman Forrest Tower said the fire in the Shuswap region grew about 20 kilometers in 12 hours, which is among the fastest growth BC has seen for a wildfire.

West Kelowna Fire Chief Jason Brolund said conditions have allowed for an “extraordinary crackdown.”

He told a news conference Sunday that the McDougall Creek wildfire had not destroyed any more homes in West Kelowna in the last 24 hours and that it was possible to start “talk of recovery.”

Two men sitting in wheelchairs watch two dogs in a parking lot, smoky skies behind them.
Veteran Rob Pullen, left, and Warren Pullen, who were evacuated from their home Thursday due to the wildfires, sit with their dogs outside their trailer in the parking lot of an evacuation center in Kelowna on Saturday. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

Lake Country Fire Chief Darren Lee was moved to pay tribute to firefighters, some of whom had fought to save their own communities from destruction.

“I just want to congratulate all of our firefighters. You know, for thousands of years, only normal people become warriors to protect their villages, protect their neighbors – there are people who work 36-hour, 48-hour shifts and take an absolute beating Lee said, a lump in her throat.

“They know their family is being evacuated as they try to defend their neighbor’s house and they just carry on.”

All evacuees are also asked to sign in at a provincial portal.

Crews equipment is stolen amid destruction of Shuswap

On Saturday, BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) officials confirmed that two fast-moving wildfires burned blocks of homes, shops and buildings in several communities in the Shuswap region.

BCWS spokesman Forrest Tower said in an interview Saturday that northerly winds carried the Adams Lake wildfire from the lower east toward Scotch Creek and as far east as Celista on the north shore of Shuswap Lake, a popular tourist destination. about 150 miles north of Kelowna.

LOOK | Wildfire burns near highway as residents evacuate near Scotch Creek:

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Scenes of destruction as the Shuswap region burns in British Columbia

Hundreds of people have fled their homes, some forever, as the blazes closed in on the North Shuswap region of inland British Columbia, leaving a trail of devastation.

The fire grew about 12 miles in 12 hours, which is among the fastest BC has seen for a wildfire, Tower said. As of Sunday morning, the fire covered an area of ​​410 square kilometers.

BCWS could not confirm the number of houses or buildings that burned overnight and said it was still assessing the damage in Celista.

However, in an update on Sunday, Tower said the damage “is quite significant.”

“Celista was actually hit worse than Scotch Creek, and the fire essentially went right through that community without being put out or mitigated,” he told Breaking:.

Tower said Sunday that equipment belonging to the crews was stolen or moved while responding to the fire, and he urged anyone with firefighting equipment to return it.

“We are doing everything we can on our end, to use our expert knowledge of where those resources would be most effective,” he said. “If they are tampered with, removed or stolen, it really limits our operations right now in the North Shuswap area.”

In Scotch Creek, the fire department building was engulfed in flames, according to Derek Sutherland of the Columbia-Shuswap Regional District.

“They’ve got all their apparatus out and are operating out of the mobile command center and are actively fighting the fire as we speak,” he said Sunday morning.


CLOCK | Witness recounts driving through a raging BC forest fire:

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‘I was terrified’: Witness recounts driving through bushfire in British Columbia

Nikki Goyer recounts feeling ‘terrified’ after she and her fiance walked through a raging wildfire Friday near Sorrento, BC, to rescue Goyer’s sister-in-law who needed to be evacuated from a nearby town.

  • Cross Country Checkup wants to know: How are the wildfires affecting you? What help do you need? Fill in the information on this form and send us your stories.

Anyone with an evacuation order must leave the area immediately.

Evacuation centers have been set up across the province to help anyone evacuating a community threatened by a bushfire.

To find the center closest to you, visit the EmergencyInfoBC website.

Evacuees are encouraged to register with Online emergency support serviceswhether or not they access the services of an evacuation center.

Have a story to share?

If you were affected by the BC wildfires and would like to share your story, please email cbcnewsvancouver@cbc.ca.

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