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Wildfire triggers evacuation order for Tumbler Ridge

The order says evacuees should leave via Highway 29 or Highway 52.
A firefighter directs water on a grass fire on an acreage behind a residential property in Kamloops, British Columbia, Monday, June 5, 2023. For the first time this year, air quality advisories are posted for part of Vancouver Island and a large section of the Lower Mainland as smoke from several wildfires wafts over the region. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

An immediate evacuation order has been issued for Tumbler Ridge, a community of 2,400 people south of Chetwynd and Dawson Creek, due to the threat posed by an encroaching wildfire.

The district says in a message issued by the B.C. Emergency Alert system that residents need to leave the area immediately due to the risk to life. 

The statement says the order includes the district and properties at Bearhole Lake because of the threat from the West Kiskatinaw River wildfire, which remains out of control. 

The fire was only discovered two days ago and the BC Wildfire Service says it continues to spread aggressively and isn't responding to suppression efforts. 

The fire has grown to 96 square kilometres in size. 

The order says evacuees should leave via Highway 29 or Highway 52.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2023. 

The Canadian Press