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Eby condemns ‘disaster tourism’, equipment tampering as B.C. wildfires burn

As of Monday, 386 wildfires were burning in province
A hot spot from the Lower East Adams Lake wildfire burns in Scotch Creek, B.C., on Sunday, August 20, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

With the backdrop of Monday’s official confirmation that at least 50 homes were burned down in Kelowna, B.C.’s premier is urging everyone to follow the restrictions on non-essential travel to communities facing wildfire threat and condemning those tampering and stealing firefighting equipment.

Eby noted that he’ll be visiting fire impacted areas of the province on Tuesday.

As of Monday, 386 wildfires were burning in province, 14 considered highly visible and highly threatening to structures.

Roughly 30,000 people are under evacuation orders, and a further 30,000 are on alert.

“I know that some people in the Kelowna area have had to wait at the emergency reception centre at this challenging time,” Emergency Minister Bowinn Ma said, calling the need humongous, especially after the number of evacuees doubling on Friday.

Ma urged anyone who is facing evacuation threat to pre-register online at

“By taking the steps to be prepared for evacuation alert or order, you are doing everything you can to protect your continue. Please continue to be prepare and have a grab-and-go kit for you, your family and your pets.

On Saturday, the province issued an order under the provincial state of emergency restricting non-essential travel to the six Okanagan communities of Kelowna, Kamloops, Oliver, Osoyoos, Penticton and Vernon.

ALSO READ: Non-essential travel to 6 Okanagan-area cities restricted

More to come.

About the Author: Ashley Wadhwani-Smith

I began my journalistic journey at Black Press Media as a community reporter in my hometown of Maple Ridge, B.C.
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