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B.C. firefighter numbers top 2,500, as 100 Brazilians arrive today

Wildfire service says about 500 international firefighters are already in B.C.

British Columbia is expecting the arrival of 100 firefighters from Brazil today, adding to the province’s growing international wildfire force.

BC Wildfire Service spokesman Cliff Chapman says about 500 international firefighters are already in B.C., boosting the ranks of the more than 2,000 provincial wildfire service personnel on the front lines battling hundreds of blazes.

He says the firefighters from Brazil will join firefighters from Mexico, the United States and Australia currently in the province.

Bowinn Ma, B.C.’s emergency management and climate readiness minister, recently requested 1,000 international firefighters through the non-profit Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre, which co-ordinates national and international fire management.

Chapman says the Brazilians and the international firefighters already in B.C. will provide much-needed relief and assistance to crews battling almost 400 fires currently burning in the province.

He says cooler temperatures and potential rain are easing wildfire conditions in B.C.’s northern regions, but continued hot weather in southern B.C. is shifting fire activity to the Kamloops, Cariboo and Southeast fire regions.

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