Provincial state of emergency declared

Today alone there have been 56 new wildfire starts throughout the province

With 56 new wildfires started today alone in B.C., the government has issued a provincial state of emergency. The first one in 14 years.

Minister of Transportation Todd Stone announced a provincial state of emergency this evening to ensure a coordinated response to the current wildfire situation and to ensure public safety.

Stone said that 56 new wildfires have been recorded today alone and that the weather forecast is not promising for the weekend ahead.

Evacuation alerts and orders have been issued today for Ashcroft, Cache Creek and Princeton.

These are in addition to the evacuation orders and alerts issued yesterday for 105 Mile House and 108 Mile House.

“The extended weather forecast is calling for continued hot, dry weather, with risks of thunderstorms in many parts of the province,” adds the ministry.

“Given the current wildfire situation and the expected increase in wildfire activity, the Province is taking this extraordinary measure of declaring a provincial state of emergency.

“This is an urgent situation and public safety is the top priority. The Province will continue to keep the public informed in this rapidly evolving situation.”

The state of emergency gives agencies such as Emergency Management BC, the Fire Commissioner, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and the RCMP authority under the Emergency Program Act to take every action necessary to fight these wildfires and protect residents and their communities.

The RCMP are assisting with the fires that have popped up around the province as well and are asking the public for continued patience.

Declarations of provincial states of emergency are issued by the minister responsible under the Emergency Program Act. The last provincial declaration of state of emergency was issued in August 2003 to deal with destructive and historic wildfire year.

For information on evacuation orders and alerts, visit Emergency Info BC.

Keep up-to-date on the provincial wildfire situation: www.bcwildfire.ca.

Send us your best news tips, photos and video by clicking the ‘Contact’ tab at the top of this page.

Just Posted

Okanagan Eats back for another year

Okanagan Eats features vendors, chef demos, and so much more. This isn’t your average food show.

Kelowna landfill flooding

The ground is soggy at the Kelowna landfill

Open letter to Premier John Horgan

LETTER: Group called First Things First Okanagan promotes action on climate change

Lake Country to get a new winery

A development proposal was approved Tuesday by council

Kelowna social housing project revised

BC Housing tries to mitigate neighbouring concerns

Lt.-Gov. Guichon believes she made the right decision

Outgoing Lt.-Gov Judith Guichon said her most memorable moments weren’t surrounding the election

Salmon Arm RCMP arrest one male on child pornography charges

Search of Canoe residence leads to seizure of computers

Highway 33 to re-open Friday

Traffic expected to resume at around 7 p.m.

VIDEO: Smokers talk pot rules at annual 4-20 event

Annual pot protest-meets-festival in Vancouver attracted hundreds to vendors, concert

New funds, recruits set to alleviate B.C. sheriff shortage

The Government of British Columbia announced new sheriff graduates, funding for more classes

Farnworth says five years too long for feds to deal with organized crime in medical pot

Needs to be dealt with much sooner than that, B.C. Public Safety Minister says

UPDATED: Unions, CP Rail come to agreement, avoiding work stoppage

Locomotive engineers, conductors and signals specialists seeking new collective agreements.

B.C. woman known to hitchhike around province missing

Aislynn Hanson, 18, last seen April 13; known to travel throughout B.C. by hitchhiking

B.C. court relies on Facebook to track down missing defendant

A court in Princeton, B.C. relied on Facebook to track down a B.C. missing his court date

Most Read