The 2017 wildfire season is officially the worst on record in British Columbia.
The B.C. Wildfire Service said Wednesday that a total of 1,026 wildfires have razed nearly 8,950 square kilometres, surpassing the old record of 8,560 square kilometers set in 1958.
The majority of the activity has occurred in the province’s Cariboo region where fires have destroyed more than 6,700 square kilometres.
B.C. Wildfire Service spokesman Kevin Skrepnek says there are still 142 fires currently burning in the province.
“Most of those are the major fires that started on July 7, we have done a good job at getting on new fires quickly and keeping them small,” he said.
Battling fires has cost the province $309 million so far this season, five times the $63 million it had budgeted for.
Emergency Management B.C. says nearly 9,300 people remain out of their homes in central and southeastern B.C., as 40 evacuation orders are still in place.
More than 45,000 people were evacuated from the homes at one point this summer.
Evacuation orders were downgraded to alerts Tuesday for the community of Clinton and from Alexis Creek to Riske Creek but Sell says there are still some evacuees needing food and assistance as they shelter in Kamloops.
With files from Canadian Press
Source:: Vancouver Sun