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Wildfire near Fort Nelson now more than 8,000 hectares, expected to grow

Click to play video: 'B.C. wildfires: Weather key factor in wildfire fight'
B.C. wildfires: Weather key factor in wildfire fight
It's a waiting game for evacuees in northeastern B.C. as thousands watch wildfires, hoping they don't move any closer to their homes. As Alissa Thibault reports, as the fires grow, all eyes are on the forecast – May 14, 2024

The Parker Lake wildfire, burning west of Fort Nelson, B.C., is now an estimated 8,433 hectares in size and officials expect it to keep growing.

The weather is playing a key role in the wildfire fight, however, with the next 24 hours deemed critical.

Rain fell around the town of Fort Nelson on Tuesday but the main focus is on the wind direction.

Click to play video: 'More wildfire evacuations in northeastern B.C., Parker Lake fire explodes in size'
More wildfire evacuations in northeastern B.C., Parker Lake fire explodes in size

The winds did not push the fire towards the community and neighbouring First Nation, as officials feared, but they are warning that could change easily.

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About 4,700 people have been on evacuation order since Friday.

“We’re not out of the woods yet, but it’s looking good (Tuesday),” Mayor Rob Fraser with the Northern Rockies Regional Municipality told Global News.

“Maybe the Wildfire Service will get a chance to corral this here in the next few days if this holds.

“If we get a lot of winds from the west, that will push the edge of the fire towards the community. The front of the fire has actually gone past and has gone down in the valley closer to the river.”

Click to play video: 'B.C. mayor on impact of Parker Lake wildfire Tuesday'
B.C. mayor on impact of Parker Lake wildfire Tuesday

Meanwhile, there is another wildfire about 60 km away from Fort St. John, which is now about 600 hectares in size and near the Doig River First Nation.

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On Monday afternoon, 175 people were ordered to leave their homes due to that wildfire.

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