Update: Residents of South Canim Lake were evacuated Wednesday morning and a local state of emergency declared, after the fire burning out of control on the hillside grew overnight.
An evacuation order for 482 properties spanning 26,395 hectares in the South Canim Lake and Mahood Lake region was issued by the Cariboo Regional District just before 11 a.m.
Prior to the official CRD order, a “tactical evacuation” – in which law enforcement go door-to-door – took place at properties along Canim Lake Road South.
Evacuees were instructed to leave the area immediately and register at the Emergency Support Services at Women’s Contact Centre, 51A Fourth Ave. South, Williams Lake.
The Tsq’escen (Canim Lake Band), though not included in the evacuation order area, enacted a voluntary evacuation notice for vulnerable members Wednesday. In a statement, band council said that evacuees over 55 years of age or with health and mobility concerns would be given a few hours to prepare before leaving the area.
“Movements are based on air quality and access potentially being compromised,” Canim Band incident commander Dawn McGrath said. “We are ensuring this proactive measure to reduce stress and provide a timely organized approach to moving.”
Update: A tactical evacuation is taking place for properties along Canim Lake South Road Wednesday morning. According to Cariboo Regional District Area H director Margo Wagner, the RCMP and South Cariboo Search and Rescue are working their way eastwards from the Canim Lake Store, at 7296 Canim Lake South Road.
The CRD has also initiated a State of Local Emergency for the whole electoral Area H, which Wagner described as a “formality when order are issued.”
“The CRD is also working on the possibility of other orders within the area ad the wildfire risk continues to be assessed,” Wagner said in an email.
Original story: Canim Lake Road South is closed in both directions Wednesday morning following increased fire activity in the Canim Lake wildfire overnight.
BC Wildfire information officer Erin Bull confirmed the fire had moved north, downhill towards the community on south Canim, however did not yet have details on how much growth or how close the fire had crept.
“We’re still getting information from the field at this time,” Bull said.
A detour is available via Mahood Lake Road to Horse Lake Road and Highway 24, according to Drive BC.
Hundreds of properties in Canim Lake and Forest Grove remain on evacuation alert due to the fire, last measured at 1753 hectares.
More to come…