BC premier, forests minister tour several wildfires, including Kelowna

Bruno Cirelli
Agosto 29, 2017

John Horgan said it will take years for ranchers, tourism operators and communities to recover from the wildfires as he reassured residents that financial assistance is part of the rebuilding process. "You want to make sure the resources are there, the dollars are there to make a difference", he said.

Horgan is scheduled to make stops in Ashcroft, Cache Creek, Kamloops and Kelowna this afternoon with Forests Minister Doug Donaldson.

The fire broke out more than seven weeks ago south of Ashcroft, burning just over 1,750-square kilometres of bush and is still just 50 per cent contained. The province has spent more than $404 million fighting wildfires.

The wildfire service said the fire has come within a few hundred metres of properties, but the agency has not received any reports of burnt structures. And weather forecasts are calling for hot, dry conditions this week, with temperatures climbing above 30 degrees in the southern Interior.

Chris Duffy with Emergency Management BC said plans are in the works for a program to help communities rebuild including help for farmers, ranchers and small businesses.

About 400 other residents remain under evacuation order due to the flames, and people who have been allowed to return will remain on evacuation alert, meaning they must be prepared to leave again at a moment's notice.

"Given how volatile, given how dire it has been at times, I think the wildfire service, everyone else involved and particularly the public has shown quite a bit of resilience", he said.

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