Western Canada wildfires prompt evacuations of thousands in British Colombia



Thousands of residents in the interior of Western Canada’s British Columbia province have evacuated their homes because of two rapidly spreading wildfires as high temperatures, heavy winds and dry conditions made it tough for authorities to control the blazes.

Fires in the Cariboo, a region some 300 kilometers (186 miles) northeast of Vancouver, spread across some 15 square kilometers as about 3,600 residents were evacuated from the area, CTV Vancouver said.

The Cariboo Regional District Emergency Operations Centre warned residents that the situation had been aggravated by lightening strikes.

“Fires are being reported faster than they can be written down – all over the Cariboo,” the center said on its Facebook page. “If you are told to evacuate from your property, please leave immediately. These fires are extremely volatile.”

Evacuations were also ordered around Ashcroft, some 100 kilometers south of the fires in the Cariboo.

A blaze discovered in that region on Thursday had spread to over 7 square kilometers, prompting a local state of emergency, CTV reported.

(Reporting by Jim Finkle in Toronto; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)


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