More evacs as fire grows

The Elephant Hill wildfire continues to grow, forcing more evacuations on its east flank.

Wind has continued to stir up the almost 125,000-hectare blaze, forcing the evacuation of those in the Bonaparte and Criss Creek areas, west of Kamloops.

The area was previously under an evacuation alert, but this alert has since been upgraded to an order.

The area joins existing surrounding areas to the east of the fire that are already under an evacuation order.

“Increased wind activity on this wildfire did contribute to growth on Friday,” said Ryan Turcot, fire information officer.

There are currently 575 firefighters battling the massive blaze, along with 25 helicopters and 123 pieces of heavy equipment.

The new evacuees join the other 6,402 people already evacuated from their homes, due to 38 evacuation orders across the province.

As of today, there are 140 wildfire burning in B.C., nine of which were started Friday. The 975 fires in the province this year have burned an estimated 651,000 hectares, the largest area burned in a season since 1958, when 855,000 hectares burned.

The cost to fight the fires this year is an estimated $277.7 million.

Cooler temperatures and some showers are expected in to hit the Interior later tonight and into Sunday, which could provide some welcome relief for those affected.


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