Wildfire season continues to rage on throughout the province as 293 fires are blazing, with 51 of those in the Cariboo Fire Centre, seven of note.
There are 64 fires in the Prince George Fire Centre, and eight in the Northwest Fire Centre.
11 new wildfires sparked in the PGFC last night (Wednesday), all of which were caused by lightning.
Three were in the Prince George area, one of which is being held while six were found in the Vanderhoof area, five of which are still active, and the others were near Fort St James and Dawson Creek.
There are four wildfires of note in the PGFC, which includes the Helmut/Kotcho Lake blaze added yesterday, which is located Northeast of Fort Nelson.
Additionally, the Cutoff Creek, Tentfire Creek and Grizzly Lake fires are still considered to be ‘of note’.
Meanwhile, the Chief Louie Lake fire is the only blaze being considered as ‘of note’ in the Northwest Fire Centre.
In order to be considered a wildfire of note, a fire must be either highly visible or pose a potential threat to public safety.
Rob Schweitzer, Director of Fire Centre Operations with the BC Wildfire Service says crews have responded to 13,087 wildfires since the start of the wildfire season, which has burned 573,000 hectares of land.
“The ten-year average for this time of year is around 797 fires and 122,000 hectares burned, so we continue to see a significant increase over that ten-year average,” Schweitzer explained.
He says 209 of the fires currently blazing are due to natural causes, while 20 of them have been human-caused.
Brendan Ralfs, Director of Response at Emergency Management BC says approximately 4,228 BC properties are currently under an evacuation order while another 21,043 properties are under an evacuation alert.
“This has lead to 8,309 people having to register as potential evacuees,” Ralfs added.
Dawn Roberts with the BC RCMP says officers have been deployed throughout areas across BC to assist officers working in areas that have been heavily impacted by wildfires.
She adds over 380 RCMP officers have been sent across the province over the last 30 days, mostly to the Central Okanogan and Central Interior areas.
The White Rock Blaze Fire located in the Kamloops Fire Centre has lead to the closure of Highway 97 between Salmon River Road and Monte Creek, a section of highway found east of Kamloops.
Schweitzer reminds residents to stay up to date on the current wildfire situation across the province.