July 17, 2014 9:37 pm
Updated: July 17, 2014 11:09 pm

155 fires burning across B.C.

WATCH: 32 new wildfires have broken out in BC Thursday triggering new evacuation orders. 1500 people living in West Kelowna are among the evacuees.Tanya Beja reports.

Fire season has hit B.C. with 155 fires burning across the province right now, according to fire officials.

There were 36 new fires today with five aggressive wildfires in the Kamloops Fire Centre, which needed additional resources.

  • The Wildfire Management Branch is responding to an increase of fire activity within the region due to hot and dry conditions, particularly in the Merritt and Penticton areas.
  • The Smith Creek wildfire near West Kelowna is now estimated at over 175 hectares in size and an evacuation order is in place issued by the Central Okanagan Regional District.
  • The Maka-Murray wildfire, west of Murray Lake, is now estimated at 400 hectares in size. Helicopters and 10 firefighters are responding to the wildfire. An Evacuation Order has been issued by the Thompson Nicola Regional District for an estimated 30 properties on the east side of Murray Lake.
  • The Apex wildfire is burning west of Penticton near Apex Mountain and is estimated at 313 hectares and currently is 50 per cent contained. This fire is suspected to be person-caused.
  • The Jura wildfire, five kilometres southeast of Missezula Lake, is currently estimated at 450 hectares. Although crews were previously withdrawn from the site due to safety concerns, 20 firefighters and air tankers are responding to the incident.
  • The Boot Hill wildfire is burning 30 km southwest of Penticton, near Lookout Mountain. The estimated size is 138 hectares and is now 30 per cent contained. Five fire fighters, two helicopters, and heavy equipment have been sent to the site.

Officials say in order to minimize the possibility of additional person-caused fires, all campfires are prohibited throughout the entire Kamloops Fire Center. The prohibition will remain in place until the public is notified that it has been rescinded.

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