50 firefighters set to arrive from Australia to help with wildfire efforts

WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. – Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale announced today that more help is on the way for the ongoing wildfire battle.

50 firefighters from Australia are set to arrive in B.C. in the next few days and other resources will be brought in from other parts of the world, if necessary.

500 additional RCMP officers have also been called in to help with policing of evacuated areas and to help with evacuations, should more happen.

Goodale says that so far, only half of people forced from their homes due to the flames have registered with the Red Cross. Goodale added they have asked the federal government for personnel, helicopters, heavy-lift aircraft, and access to the national emergency stockpile of cots and blankets.

Residents that may have lost their homes northwest of 100 Mile House will also be contacted soon.

Cariboo Regional District chairman Al Richmond said teams have now been able to get into areas where houses and other buildings were destroyed to get a clearer picture of the damage.

Richmond says that the fire near Williams Lake is being held five kilometres from the city’s outskirts. Williams Lake residents were evacuated over the weekend.