Provincial state of emergency extended for wildfires
The Government of British Columbia August 31 extended the provincial state of emergency through the end of the day on Sept. 14, to support the ongoing co-ordinated response to the wildfire situation and to ensure public safety.
“Things are trending in the right direction, but we must remain alert and aware of the fires still burning and the potential for others to start,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “Extending this state of emergency recognizes that the potential for significant wildfire activity persists, even as the nights get longer and the days cool down a bit, so I urge British Columbians to continue to be vigilant.”
As of the morning of Tuesday, Aug. 31, 233 wildfires were burning in B.C., with 21 evacuation orders affecting approximately 3,754 properties. There are 77 evacuation alerts affecting approximately 6,073 properties.
There are currently six wildfires listed by the BC Wildfire Service in the East Kootenay. They are all under control or are being held.
“It’s been a long and challenging summer for our crews on the front lines of this fire, and it’s not over yet,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “Let’s help fire crews by doing our part to be fire safe and report fire activity, so we can get through the remainder of this season without any more human caused fires.”
Current fire conditions may lead to continued severe fire behaviour and the potential for more evacuations. While extraordinary powers under the Emergency Program Act are not needed at this time, the declaration gives the province the ability to move quickly, if the need arises.
The provincial government can extend the period of a declaration made by the minister responsible as necessary.