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July 24, 2017 3:48 am

“No evacuee will be turned away” – Transportation Minister Todd Stone

Sunday, July 16, 2017 @ 12:39 PM

Prince George, B.C. – It  is estimated  about 25% of the  people  forced from  their  homes in Williams Lake  and  Loon Lake  last night,  made the decision  to  head to Prince George.

Estimates are that, so far,  between 36,000  and 37,000 people have been  forced from their homes because of wildfires in the central interior  and in  Kelowna.

While that number is staggering,   it is not  yet  the worst  displacement of people  in B.C. because of fires.   The worst  was in  2003,  when 50 thousand people  in the Okanagan were forced from their homes.

But the 2017 fire season is still  in its early  days and  with  a lot of  summer  ahead ,  there is  little likelihood  things will  improve any time soon “With the size of the fires we have burning,  it would take an unseasonably significant  rain event to change the situation”  says Kevin Skrepnek, Chief Information Officer with the BC Wildfire Service.

The White Lake fire,  which is the one threatening Williams Lake,  remains  about 7-10 kms west of the City.

Transportation Minister, Todd Stone  says  certainly,  Kamloops is  “At the point of being stretched,” but adds  that City has been busy  developing  new Emergency  Centres .  The Sandman Centre has been  developed as a  lodging site, augmenting the Thompson Rivers University  which is already at capacity.  “No evacuee will be turned away” says  Stone.

Emergency Management  BC  Assistant Deputy Minister  Robert Turner says  with the numbers of  communities under threat,   the  plan is to  open up further  centres in the lower mainland in Chilliwack and Surrey.  Neither has  accepted any  evacuees  yet  “If we get another wave of evacuees,  we will be  directing them to Chilliwack and Cloverdale  (Surrey).”

 

 

 

Comments

Curious how people without vehicles or homeless get evacuated in situations like this?

    There were muster stations set up at various locations in Williams Lake where school buses picked up those without other means of evacuation. They spoke to one guy on the news this morning who said he spent 12 hours on the bus as they make their way to Kamloops.

      Your so knowledgeable little bird.

      Well Kimmy I have enough of it to know the proper usage of yore, your and you’re:P

      Cheers.

This event is getting very serious .

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