Advertisement

Entire city of Merritt, B.C., on evacuation alert due to wildfire

Click to play video: 'Wildfire smoke darkens skies in B.C.' Wildfire smoke darkens skies in B.C.
WATCH: Smoke from wildfires turned the sky a deep red in Vernon, B.C. and darkened skies in parts of the province, as more evacuations were ordered in the Okanagan region of British Columbia – Aug 16, 2021

The entire City of Merritt has been placed on evacuation alert Sunday night due to a wildfire burning nearby.

The Emergency Operations Centre said Sunday that a fire near the city poses a potential threat to life and structures.

This means more than 7,000 people are on evacuation alert.

Click to play video: 'B.C. wildfires: Hope to Merritt Coquihalla closure due to fire risk' B.C. wildfires: Hope to Merritt Coquihalla closure due to fire risk
B.C. wildfires: Hope to Merritt Coquihalla closure due to fire risk – Aug 16, 2021

Everyone was urged to be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice should the situation escalate.

Story continues below advertisement

The issue is the Lytton Creek wildfire, which is an estimated 56,329 hectares in size.

This fire is the same one that swept through the Village of Lytton in late June, destroying about 95 per cent of the structures in the community.

The July Mountain wildfire forced the closure of the Coquihalla Highway between Hope and Merritt Sunday evening.

Click to play video: 'Tourists asked to leave B.C. Interior communities as residents prepare for wildfires' Tourists asked to leave B.C. Interior communities as residents prepare for wildfires
Tourists asked to leave B.C. Interior communities as residents prepare for wildfires – Aug 13, 2021

Read more: Wildfire forces closure of B.C.’s Coquihalla Highway between Hope and Merritt

Story continues below advertisement

It was not known when the highway will reopen but officials said everyone should avoid non-essential travel at this time.

Due to the alert, the city is asking anyone from other areas fleeing wildfires to go to Chilliwack in B.C.’s Fraser Valley, rather than Merritt, at this time.

Sponsored content