Delta sends help to battle BC wildfires

Centre of British Columbia closed off to recreation because of fire danger

Centre of British Columbia closed off to recreation because of fire danger

Crews battled dozens of wildfires raging across California on Wednesday, gaining ground on several of the more destructive blazes as forecasters warned that hot, dry, tinderbox conditions would persist across the U.S. West.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the creation of a new ad hoc cabinet committee to co-ordinate the federal government's response to the fires, including recovery and rebuilding efforts. "So we're more than happy to assist when they call us up".

The BC Wildfire Service is now reporting the 150 Mile House fire south of Williams Lake is 50 per cent contained. The Gustafsen wildfire near 100 Mile House, estimated at 5,000 hectares with 15 percent containment.

A 78-person contingent that left Sudbury on Tuesday, just over half of the 146 Ontario-wide ministry contribution sent this week.

Across the province, Robert Turner with Emergency Management BC says more than 16,000 people are now registered as evacuees, and cash has finally started flowing to them. "For those that have not, they have case managers who can discuss individual cases and they can issue cash cards where they have to".

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Williams Lake CAO Milo McDonald said that the area has seen an increased RCMP presence.

The blaze has displaced 4,000 people and destroyed over 100 structures, including 41 homes since it began five days ago.

There are a number of air quality advisories are still in effect in communities where smoke from the fires has drifted, but so far, there are no reports of anyone being severely impacted. "If that forecast comes to fruition, it's going to be a big challenge for us".

"A province doesn't respond until they're asked and we've been asked, so we're responding", said Department of Natural Resources spokesperson Bruce Nunn.

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