KAMLOOPS (NEWS 1130) — While B.C.’s overall wildfire count has dropped slightly over the past week, there are still some 260 of them keeping fire crews busy this weekend.
Compared to last Friday, the number of wildfires is down from 275 fires reported, and down from about 300 earlier in the week.
There are 57 evacuation orders in place, down one from Friday afternoon, affecting nearly 5,000 properties.
Another nearly 16,500 properties, more than 1,000 fewer than the previous day, were on evacuation alert, meaning residents have been told to be ready to leave on short notice.
Of the 260 wildfires in the province, 95 are in the Kamloops Fire Center, which covers most of the Southern Interior.
There are nearly 40 wildfires of note being battled by the B.C. Wildfire Service.
The largest continues to be the Sparks Creek Fire north of Ashcroft, measuring some 560-square kilometres — roughly half the size of Metro Vancouver.
There are 3,320 firefighters and other personnel working to fight the blazes, including 94 from out of province.
On Friday, more than 100 firefighters from Quebec made their way to the province and another 100 firefighters from Mexico are set to arrive over the weekend.
They will arrive in Abbotsford, be checked over by Fraser Health, and then deployed to the most needed areas.
Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth is set to hold a news conference welcoming 100 firefighters arriving in B.C. from Mexico Saturday.