WATCH ABOVE: Wildfires in southern B.C. relent enough for some evacuees to return home.
TORONTO – While the threat of forest fires has finally dropped to more manageable levels, this summer has proven to be one of the busiest in the past few years.
So, just how bad have the fires been?
When you look at the 2015 numbers, the sheer size of the area burned is stunning. The total forest burned in 2015 (as of Aug. 17) is 3,004,848 hectares. That’s a larger area than the island of Sicily, Italy.
And in 2014, which was the worst fire season since 2007, 4,123,986 hectares burned, the equivalent of burning the entire country of Switzerland.
Though the area burned was less than in 2014, the total number of fires was worst, with 6,235 fires as of Aug. 16.
Then there’s the response efforts.
Fighting fires across areas larger than islands or small countries is a collaborative effort. Firefighters from across the country and even from the United States have pitched in to help combat the active fire season.