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B.C. wildfires: Province cancels state of emergency

Global News logo Global News 2018-09-07 Doyle Potenteau
The province-wide state of emergency in B.C. because of wildfires has been rescinded. © Submitted The province-wide state of emergency in B.C. because of wildfires has been rescinded.

The state of emergency in British Columbia because of wildfires is now over, the provincial government announced on Friday morning.

The Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General said it decided to rescind the order because of cooler weather, progress being made in the fight against wildfires and a reduction in the number of properties under evacuation order. The state of emergency was first declared on Aug. 15 and was extended once.

READ MORE:

B.C. extends wildfire state of emergency through Sept. 12

“While the extraordinary powers of the provincial state of emergency are no longer required, the wildfire situation is not over,” the ministry said in a press release. “It is vital that the public remains prepared and follows the continued direction of local governments.”

As of Friday, there are 485 wildfires are burning in B.C., with 19 evacuation orders affecting approximately 1,994 individuals, plus 39 evacuation alerts affecting approximately 4,848 people. To date, more than 1.3 million hectares have been burned in B.C.

The ministry also added that the government can declare a provincial state of emergency at any time as needed.

Quick facts:

Declarations of provincial states of emergency are issued by the minister responsible under the Emergency Program Act and extended by Order in Council.

The last provincial state of emergency before this season was issued during the 2017 wildfire season, from July 7 to Sept. 15.

The last declared state of emergency before the 2017 wildfire season was issued in August 2003, to deal with wildfires.

For information on evacuation orders and alerts, visit Emergency Info BC: https://www.emergencyinfobc.gov.bc.ca/

Keep up-to-date on the provincial wildfire situation: www.bcwildfire.ca

For information on how to prepare for an emergency, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/PreparedBC

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