Skip to main content

Wildfires prompt 75 evacuation orders and alerts in B.C.


Wildfires have exploded in the province, triggering dozens of evacuation orders and alerts.

As of Saturday afternoon, 40 communities have been forced to flee and 35 communities have been told to be ready to leave at a moment’s notice.

Jennifer Toland is among the evacuees. She was able to escape the flames Thursday, but not the smoke.

“It took me about eight hours from there to get all the way to safety in Fort St. James. But it turns out, I didn't really get over the smoke because it's everywhere. There's no getting out,” she told CTV News.

Toland and her husband own Eliguk Lake lodge, a fishing resort where they live off the grid.

They were originally sleeping on a barge earlier in the week, trying their best not to leave their home, but the smoke made them change their minds.

“The dogs were having a hard time breathing. We don't have oxygen masks for the dogs,” she said.

Toland made the harrowing drive through a logging road and rugged terrain, passing by three wildfires, she said.

Her husband stayed behind to protect their property and livelihood.

“We’d want him to come with us. But it just was one of those things, that if the resort goes up in flames, that's literally all we have. We worked for that our entire life,” she explained. “We're at that age where, you know, we're done doing things all over again, it's been too many times.”


An Australian Incident Management Team was scheduled to arrive in Canada Saturday.

There is no word yet on exactly how many firefighters are in the country and where they will be deployed.

Sarah Budd, a fire information officer with the BC Wildfire Service, said they will likely be responding to the northern half of the province, where the most intense wildfire activity is located.

On Friday, Minister of Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair announced federal assistance on the way, and the military is being mobilized.

“We're incredibly grateful for the support from the federal government. We have a long history of working in close partnership with the feds when we're facing challenging wildfire conditions as we are this year,” Budd said.

The department of National Defence said military personnel and two Griffon helicopters will be deployed Sunday and will be on the ground Monday. Top Stories

Stay Connected