2018 wildfire season now the worst on record for hectares burned

The Boundary wildfire on Aug. 25, 2018. Parks Canada/Ryan Peruniak

It’s official: this year’s wildfire season is the worst on record in terms of hectares burned.

According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, 1,250,383 hectares have burned across the province since April 1, surpassing last year’s record total of 1,216,053 hectares.

Before the last two summers, the province’s worst wildfire season occurred in 1958 when 855,968 hectares burned. coverage of the B.C. wildfires

Story continues below advertisement

The total cost of fighting this year’s fires is $350.1 million.

That number is closing in on the second-most expensive year in B.C. history, 2015-2016, when the province spent $380 million.

While more hectares have burned this year than last, many of the fires have occurred in more remote locations, leading to less property damage and fewer evacuations.

“This year has been quite an interesting year just for the fact that all six of our regional fire centres are very busy, so in terms of resourcing that has definitely been a bit of a challenge just because the fires are so spread out,” Kyla Fraser with the B.C. Wildfire Service said.

The service was tracking more than 50 “wildfires of note” — fires large enough or close enough to communities to be of concern — in every corner of B.C.

On Wednesday, the B.C. government extended its wildfire-driven state of emergency through Sept. 12.

— With files from Simon Little and Amy Judd

Sponsored content