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Over 500 wildfire personnel deployed in Peace region battling four blazes of note

Twenty-three wildfires are burning within the Prince George Fire Centre, four are of note – all of which are located in the Peace Region.

Information Officer for the North Peace Complex, Hannah Swift told Vista Radio they have no shortage of personnel fighting those blazes.

“At the North Peace Complex we have over 500 personnel on the ground working out of Fort St. John on the forest fires within the vicinity of that community. We can’t stretch our resources or divert them to new starts, we need to focus on the we have already burning across the province.”

“This includes over 300 wildland firefighters up to 130 structure protection personnel as well as 20 helicopters that are assigned to these incidents. We are not out of the woods yet.”

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The largest blaze in the region is Donnie Creek at well over 43-thousand hectares followed by the Stoddart Creek wildfire at 21,455 hectares.

In addition, the Red Creek wildfire near the Blueberry River First Nations is a shade under 3-thousand hectares while Cameron River is 385 hectares.

Swift added a slight drop in the temperature could lessen the blow of any current wildfire activity in the Prince George Fire Centre – especially in the Peace region.

“We are seeing temperatures in the low to mid-20s and the relative humidities are a bit higher. There is often a shorter aggressive burning window. When we see temperatures higher than our relative humidities we call that crossover so that is when we see the most active wildfire behaviour – the shorter that window is the less aggressive fire behaviour we see.”

Wildfire personnel are also dealing with smoky skies that have been persistent for the past several days.

Swift mentioned the smoky skies we are seeing are pretty similar to what they would face in other parts of BC.

“When we have those extreme winds and we have massive columns of smoke or if the visibility is as low as 20 feet in front of you, that can pose a hazard to our fire crews.”

As of noon on Friday, a campfire ban will be in place for the entire Prince George Fire Centre in addition to the Category 2 and 3 bans already in place.

“At this point in time, we really can’t afford any new lightning or human-caused fires. If we can control any of those two factors for those wildfires we will do so,” added Swift.

Today (Wednesday), the Peace River Regional District has rescinded the Evacuation Order surrounding the Cameron River Wildfire.

All properties that were under the order are now under an Evacuation Alert.

Additionally, the Evacuation Alert near the Boundary Lake Wildfire has been rescinded.

Furthermore,  the Evacuation Order area for the Red Creek and Stoddart Creek wildfires has ended while the alert for the City of Fort St. John is also gone.

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