FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – There are now six areas in the North Peace under an evacuation alert. Late Wednesday, the Peace River Regional District issued the fifth for an area near Mile 80 of the Alaska Highway.
The alert was issued after a fire broke out in the area Wednesday and quickly grew to 50 hectares in size. Crews will return the fire again Thursday.
Maps of the areas under Evacuation Alerts
Early on Wednesday afternoon, Chief Fire Information Officer Kevin Skrepnek told reporters eight fires had started in B.C. since Tuesday.
Now, at least three have started since that announcement.
A fire near the Albertan border is almost out, and was caused by a tree falling on a power line. Four firefighters attended the scene, and the fire itself was only a fifth of a hectare in size.
Other fires, including one near Cecil Lake and one on the Alaska Highway west of Dawson Creek, have started. The one near Cecil Lake is less than one hectare in size.
In reference to the Siphon Creek fire, 18 firefighters are now assigned to that fire, and three helicopters are assisting in battling it.
In light of a devastating fire in Fort McMurray that has destroyed 1,600 structures and lead to the evacuation of the entire city, Skrepnek says B.C. will assist them however they can — while B.C. tries to fight fires here.
The 9,000-hectare Siphon Creek fire is steadily growing closer to the provincial border. Crews from B.C. will fight that fire even if it spreads into Alberta, he said, to take the burden of resources off of them.
Five evacuation alerts are in effect right now, all in the Peace Region. Ian Lightbody, with Emergency Management BC, says those alerts are for Siphon Creek, Doig River, Clearview/Cecil Lake, Beatton Airport Road, and Blueberry River.
In total, the evacuation alerts affect 325 residences in the area. However, it is not known for sure how many people these alerts affect for sure.
If you’re in an area under an evacuation alert, you need to be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice. The following article includes tips on what to pack. Click here to read how to prepare to evacuate.