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

Greyhound cleared to end routes in northern B.C., Vancouver Island

Company says nine routes have dropped 30% in ridership in last five years

BC BUDGET: New spaces a step to universal child care

Fees reduced for licensed daycare operators

BC BUDGET: NDP cracks down on speculators, hidden ownership

Foreign buyers’ tax extended to Fraser Valley, Okanagan, Vancouver Island

BC BUDGET: Payroll tax replaces medical premiums

Health spending to increase $1.5 billion for drugs, primary care teams

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

VIDEO: Top 10 B.C. budget highlights

The NDP is focusing on childcare, affordable housing and speeding up the elimination of MSP premiums

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Team USA beats Canada 3-2 on the shootout to take home Olympic gold

Americans win their first gold medal since 1998

Two Haida men detained for crossing U.S.-Canada border

Edenshaw and Frisby travelled from Alaska to Prince Rupert for the All Native Basketball Tournament

Alberta takes out full-page ads in B.C. over strained relationship

It’s the latest move between the two provinces over progress on Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

B.C. teacher suspended over allegedly using N-word in worksheets

Trafalgar Elementary teacher under investigation by Vancouver School Board

Toddler swept away in Ontario floods

Toddler missing as flooding forces thousands from their homes in Ontario

BC BUDGET: New money helps seniors’ care shortage

Job stability for care aides key to recruitment, union leader says

Mixed messages on B.C.’s efforts to cool hot housing market

Economist says undersupply of homes in Metro Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna will keep prices high

Most Read