Northern and interior British Columbia continue to battle new wildfires

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The BC Wildfire Service said it responded to several new wildfires on Friday, and at least one blaze believed to be contained is now out of control.

According to British Columbia Wildfire Dashboardthere were 170 active fires in the province as of Friday evening, an increase of 30 over the past two days as of 11 p.m.

According to the service’s Twitter feed, crews responded to “numerous lightning-ignited wildfires” overnight Thursday through Friday at the Cariboo Fire Center – which stretches from Clinton, north to the river. Cottonwood, east to Wells Gray Provincial Park and west to Tweedsmuir Provincial Park.

Most of the fires are located in the 100 Mile and Central Cariboo areas, with one fire northeast and another southwest of Canoe Lake, plus a third near Big Bar Lake, they said.

BC Wildfire Service said in posts to its Twitter account that fire crews responded to “numerous lightning-ignited wildfires” overnight Thursday through Friday at the Cariboo Fire Center. (British Columbia Wildfire Service)

Officials say one fire has already been extinguished and the other three are under control, but they expect more fires to be uncovered in the coming days.

As of Thursday evening, the fire at Hasler Flats, about 30 kilometers southwest of Chetwynd – 302 kilometers north of Prince George – grew from under control to out of control, they said.

The change in status was due to “a small run on the south flank of the fire” as well as an increase in visible smoke.

Additional air tankers have been brought in to help, and officials say the blaze has yet to reach so-called decision points – the limits of a fire management plan where firefighters will change tactics if the fire reaches a certain area.

New fires in the interior of British Columbia

Meanwhile, the Forest Fire Department also said there were two new fires in the interior of British Columbia on Friday.

In the afternoon, crews responded to the Cosens Creek Fire in Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park, five miles southeast of Vernon.

The fire was highly visible from Highway 97, Vernon and surrounding areas, and was spreading at a moderate speed, they said.

Around 9 p.m., the Forest Fire Department also responded to the fire in Vlem Creek, about nine kilometers east of Armstrong in the North Okanagan.

They said the fire was highly visible to surrounding communities and that air tankers were already on the scene, with crews and helicopters en route.

BC Wildfire Service says anyone who sees signs of a wildfire can report it by calling 1-800-663-5555 or dialing *5555 on a cell phone.

A fire can also be reported through the service’s mobile app, where photos can be uploaded for a response team to assess.

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