Air Canada and WestJet customers who are scheduled to fly in and out of some cities in British Columbia are being offered flexible flight options, after B.C. issued a province-wide state of emergency due to wildfires.
The state of emergency issued Wednesday is in place for 14 days, the government of B.C. said, but could be extended or shortened if needed.
A WestJet spokesperson said the airline implemented flexible change policy with an opportunity to cancel or change flights to or from Kamloops, Kelowna, Penticton, Prince George and Terrace for travel on or between Aug. 15 and Aug. 22.
WestJet also advised that travellers to and from the B.C. cities check their flight status before heading to the airport.
“Our operations remain unaffected at this time, however, we continue to monitor the situation closely,” spokesperson Morgan Bell wrote in an emailed statement.
Air Canada said customers travelling to and from Kamloops, Kelowna, Castlegar, Prince George, Penticton or Terrace who bought tickets no later than Aug. 15 for travel until Aug. 22 had the option of changing their flights for free for another date between Aug. 15 and Aug. 31. Flight changes are dependent on availability, Air Canada said.
As of Aug. 14, there were 566 wildfires burning in B.C., with 29 evacuation orders affecting approximately 3,050 people (1,521 properties), in addition to 48 evacuation alerts impacting approximately 18,720 people (9,359 properties).
More than 3,372 firefighters and contractors are fighting the fires across the province.
— With files from Amy Judd, Global News