Here we are again; finding ourselves in a situation whereby the Province of British Columbia has had to take the step of declaring a Provincial State of Emergency as 566 wildfires currently burn across the province.
In a Provincial State of Emergency, the province has access to federal resources and support, which aids in streamlining a coordinated response to protect the public. At this time, the federal government has accepted British Columbia’s request for assistance. In the coming days, federal personnel and resources will be arriving in BC to assist the over 3300 firefighters and contractors working around the province with the wildfire efforts. The State of Emergency also gives agencies, such as the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development, Emergency Management BC, the Fire Commissioner and the RCMP, the authority to take every action necessary to fight the wildfires and protect people and communities.
“Given the unpredictable behaviour of wildfires and the number of significant wildfires in all areas of the province, we’re bringing in the additional resources we need to keep people and communities as safe as possible.” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development.
Much of BC is bracing for an uphill climb into the fall season, both in containing the wildfires and managing the air quality issues. The Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (CCCTA) is in direct daily contact with the Provincial Regional Emergency Operations Centres in our Region as well as the Regional Districts, BC Wildfire, Destination BC, and representatives of the Province, all of whom are monitoring the situation closely.
Officially, as of August 15th, all highways in and out of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region are open. This is subject to change and we remind you to check with DriveBC.ca for updates as they become available. Evacuation orders and alerts remain in place for a number of locations in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region and can be found on the Cariboo Regional District website.
Media attention during this time tends to be quite negative; because of this we ask that you remain accurate in your messaging, and to use clear, and up-to-date information solely from official sources. The CCCTA social media messaging will continue to focus on our region being open for business, “Know Before You Go” awareness communications and providing information on the many activities and areas to visit throughout the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast.
In times like these, it is best to be informed as much as possible, and we encourage everyone to put safety first. Here is a list of official real-time information and resources that are readily available to you:
• The BC Wildfire Service has set up an interactive map of all active wildfires across the province. They also release the latest wildfire information on their Facebook and Twitter accounts.
• Emergency Info BC has a provincial Twitter account with up-to-date information about current wildfires and other emergencies in BC.
• Drive BC provides information about road closures and delays, posting updates on Twitter and their website .
• Environment Canada provides the latest weather information, statements, and air quality advisories.
• To report a wildfire or irresponsible behaviour call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 from a cell phone.
The Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association would like to extend our support to the communities and industry in this time of need. Please let us know how you are doing, what you need, and how we can help in any way. Please don’t hesitate to contact Beverly Evans via email:email@example.com or phone: