VIDEO: B.C. wildfire crews paying close attention to storms in next 48 hours

B.C. was hit with lightning on Tuesday night, sparking 132 new wildfires within 24 hours

The next 48 hours are going to be crucial for those on the frontlines of B.C.’s wildfires, as lightning storms are forecast to continue striking the northern regions.

“There really isn’t a lot of B.C. that doesn’t at least have a chance to see some lightning activity,” BC Wildfire Service spokesperson Ryan Turcot said Wednesday.

“Since Saturday, the BC Wildfire Service has seen an uptick in wildfire activity, especially over the last 24 hours, and lightning has been a big driver of that.”

Following hotter-than-average temperatures for most of July, B.C. was hit with lightning on Tuesday night, sparking 132 new wildfires within 24 hours. Most of those fires started in the Cariboo, where 50 wildfires broke out overnight.

The Okanagan has seen the brunt of wildfire action, especially in the Central Okanagan and Similkameen areas, where about 12,000 hectares have been scorched.

Fortunately, Turcot said, the vast majority of the fires have not affected communities, although a handful of the blazes have been highly visible from highways and lakes, including near Lac La Hache and Kootenay National Park.

Nearly 68,000 hectares have burned in B.C. so far this year, about 46,000 of which has been in the Prince George fire zone.

WATCH: Emergency crews respond to lightning-caused fires around Williams Lake Monday night

READ MORE: 100 Mile House firefighters pull an all-nighter at large Norbord fire

Precipitation is expected to move through northern B.C., with cooler temperatures forecast into the B.C. Day long weekend.

“It’s a double-edged sword,” Turcot said. “It’s going to bring cooler more seasonable temperatures, which is always a good thing in fire response, but also means we might see more lightning potential… stronger winds and when faster winds are blowing – that can make the existing fires move more aggressively.”

Rain is also anticipated in patchy patterns into next week.

“We’re expecting a rigged pattern to start settling in around Saturday to make for clearer, calmer and drier conditions,” Turcot said.

The BC Wildfire Service is again urging caution in the backcountry where some wildfires may look inactive but still continue to have hot spots, damaged trees that have a risk of falling, and hot ashes on the ground.

“Wildfires do have certain affects on the terrain they burn through,” he said. “It’s really important for people heading out to the backcountry to know where the wildfires have been burning and avoid active work sites.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

UPDATE: 5 injured in plane crash following Abbotsford International Airshow

One in critical condition in incident involving vintage plane

Shag Creek area under evacuation order, area expanded

93 properties are being told to evacuate immediately

B.C. Wildfires 2018: Thousands prepare to leave their homes at a moment’s notice

Northwest B.C. and Cariboo seeing most fire activity in province as crews battle 490 fires

‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin has died

Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn reports Franklin passed Thursday at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit

‘Hot and dirty work:’ Commander describes fighting massive Ontario wildfire

Ontario has seen more than 1,000 forest fires so far this year, compared to 561 in all of 2017.

‘Billion-piece jigsaw puzzle:’ Canadians key to 1st complete map of wheat genome

The paper has 202 authors from 73 research agencies in 20 countries.

70 years after Babe Ruth’s death, fans still flock to grave

After Ruth died of throat cancer at age 53, tens of thousands of fans came to pay respects

Airbnb’s federal budget proposal tells Liberals, ‘we want to be regulated’

Submission says ‘we want to be regulated’ and asks the government to avoid forcing existing rules

Greens won’t run candidate in Burnaby South as ‘leader’s courtesy’ to Singh: May

Green Leader Elizabeth May says the decision is an extension of a ‘leader’s courtesy’

Missing B.C. hiker, dog found safe after 3-day search

Cranbrook hiker had been missing since Sunday, August 12, near Jumbo Pass.

UPDATED: B.C. RCMP dismantle Kinder Morgan protest camp

RCMP say they will enforce a court injunction today and remove Trans Mountain pipeline protesters who have been camped outside a Kinder Morgan terminal in Burnaby.

Italy says death toll will mount in Genoa bridge collapse

Authorities worried about the stability of remaining large sections of a partially collapsed bridge evacuated about 630 people from nearby apartments.

Most Read