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Be fire smart: B.C. Wildfire Service issues reminder as hot weather hits Southern Interior

Temperatures are expected to reach 30 C Thursday through Saturday, though a chance of showers is in the forecast. Global News

Sunny skies and warm temperatures are in the Okanagan forecast for the next week.

With hot weather expected to heat up and dry out the region, the BC Wildfire Service is once again reminding Valley residents to be fire smart.

“Wildfire prevention and risk mitigation is a shared responsibility,” said B.C. Wildfire Service information officer Marla Catherall.

WATCH BELOW (Aired March 19, 2019): Wildfire officials brace for Okanagan fire season

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Wildfire officials brace for Okanagan fire season – Mar 19, 2019

“So it’s important that everyone does their part and remain vigilant in any activities that could pose a risk for starting fires.”

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Of the six fire centres in B.C., three have open fire bans and restrictions: Northwest, Prince George and Cariboo. The Northwest region also has a campfire ban.

Open fires and campfires are still permitted in Coastal, Kamloops and Southeast fire regions, though maybe not for long.

READ MORE: Petition calling for provincewide burning ban during B.C. wildfire season gains momentum

“There is some discussion about the need for a category two and three burn restriction,” said Catherall. “That is happening currently, but, as there are no bans right now [in the Kamloops Fire Centre], we’re asking the public to remain vigilant.”

According to the B.C. Wildfire Service, there have been 213 fires since April 1, including 27 in the last seven days.

Of the 213 fires to date, 95.3 per cent have been deemed human-caused, with lightning accounting for 2.3 per cent. The remaining 2.4 per cent have an unknown cause.

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WATCH BELOW (Aired May 10, 2019): B.C. Government praying for rain

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Further, there are currently 31 active fires, including 10 fires sparking to life in the last two days. The suspected causes of the 31 active fires are: 77.4 per cent human caused, 12.9 per cent lighting caused and 9.7 per cent unknown.

Continuing on with lightning, a chance of thunderstorms and lightning are in the Okanagan forecast for Thursday and Friday.

Environment Canada is calling for temperatures between 30 C on Thursday and 25 C on Tuesday.

WATCH BELOW (Aired July 18, 2017): Amateur video captures scales of wildfire in Hanceville, B.C.

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Amateur video captures scales of wildfire in Hanceville, BC – Jul 18, 2017

For Thursday, a mix of sun, cloud and rain is in the forecast, with a 30 to 40 per cent chance of showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon. The projected high is 30.

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It’s the same scenario for Friday, though with a 30 per cent chance of showers.

READ MORE: Municipal firefighters training to fight wildfires as seasons become more intense

For Saturday and Sunday, the national weather service is calling for sunny skies and respective daily highs of 29 and 27.

For Monday and Tuesday, Environment Canada is predicting a mix of sun and cloud with respective highs of 26 and 25.

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