(Canadian Forces/Twitter)

Canadian Armed Forces prepare to leave B.C. after wildfires

About 100 personnel will stay in southern B.C. to help with a fire near Princeton

Military aircraft and many of the armed forces personnel loaned to British Columbia by the federal government at the height of the wildfire season are preparing to return to their home bases.

A news release from the Department of National Defence says most federal resources will be sent home as officials in B.C. determine there’s no longer a need for mop-up support on wildfires in the Okanagan.

About 100 personnel, mostly reservists from three separate Canadian brigade groups, will stay in southern B.C. to help with a fire near Princeton.

Canadian Armed Forces planes carried more than 47,000 kilograms of freight, transported 115 passengers and conducted 49 reconnaissance flights and other missions over the wildfires in the weeks after B.C. requested assistance on Aug. 13.

PHOTOS: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

READ MORE: Worst may almost be over for 2018 B.C. wildfire season

READ MORE: Rainfall, cooler temperatures bring some relief in wildfire-ravaged B.C.

More than 400 soldiers and other personnel assisted with mop-up, aircraft maintenance and various other duties during the deployment.

B.C. declared a provincial state of emergency as hundreds of wildfires flared in August, but rescinded the order last Friday as all but the southeastern corner of the province is now listed at a low to very low risk of further fires.

The BC Wildfire Service says more than 13,300 square kilometres of woodland has been charred by more than 2,000 wildfires since April.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan says his thoughts are with those affected and he is pleased members of the armed forces could assist.

“Though the damage is devastating, I am proud of the contribution our Canadian Armed Forces have made during this time of need,” Sajjan says in the release.

“From transporting equipment and firefighters, to containing the fire’s spread through mop-up operations, our women and men in uniform demonstrated their professionalism and readiness to answer the call to serve and protect their fellow Canadians,” he says.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Kelowna’s definitive Christmas market list

We’ve prepared a list of every market in the Central Okanagan

Kelowna child care centre selected to deliver low-cost universal child care

Kelowna’s Little Scholars program has qualified

Proportional representation not proving popular with voters in Central Okanagan

With three weeks to go, fewer than 9,400 referendum votes cast in three area ridings

Dragon’s money is for education, says Lotus Liner entrepreneur JB Owen

While in Kelowna, Owen watched the Dragons invest $150,000 in the female hygiene product

Rockets lose double header to Winterhawks

Rockets fell 4-2 Sunday night

Find me my furever home

Noodle is available for adoption from the Kelowna BC SPCA

B.C. health care payroll tax approved, takes effect Jan. 1

Employers calculating cost, including property taxes increases

Mother of missing Shuswap woman holds out hope she’ll be found

Nicole Bell’s mom urges public to report any information that might help

Nunavut urges new plan to deal with too many polar bears

Territory recommends a proposal that contradicts much of conventional scientific thinking

Review: Okanagan Symphony dazzles with Verdi’s Requiem

Remembrance offering was months in the making

Video: Historic South Okanagan restaurant closes

Bittersweet ending for open mic night patrons and musicians in Penticton

Shelter struggles: Landlord takes over rental unit whenever visiting B.C. town

Renter’s story highlights how hard it is to find accommodation in Revelstoke

Summerland fallen soldier honoured in Alberta

Percy Broad called to the bar, more than a century after his death in battle

Lack of public response threatens B.C. referendum credibility

Of the few who have voted, poll finds most rejected proportional representation

Most Read