This is a look at the Hanceville wildfire in the Chilcotin west of Williams Lake Sunday afternoon. (Photo submitted)

‘We have to try and save our homes’: Tl’etinqox First Nation

The members are gathering at the Anaham Band office to serve food and water as they wait it out

Members of the Tl’etinqox First Nation community of Anaham Reserve are defying an evacuation order to leave the Chilcotin in order to try and save their homes.

“We sent out the elders today but anyone who is young enough and fit enough is staying behind to fight the fire,” said Cecil Grinder.

“We have to try and save our homes.”

An estimated 200 to 300 members are staying behind – a decision Chief Joe Alphonse announced Sunday morning.

Grinder said officials wanted them out but they refused.

Forests Minister John Rustad called the news troubling.

“I understand why he wants to do it but this is a serious risk given the challenge of what could happen with rapid moving fires, he said in a statement. “We’ve connected him with satellite communications in case we lose all ground lines and will be in frequent communications with him.”

He and several other community members were in Williams Lake gathering food and emergency supplies such as propane to take back to their community, which has been cut off from power since Saturday.

They said they would be travelling back tonight on the closed Highway 20 no matter what.

Travellers returning from the area, located about an hour’s drive west of Williams Lake described seeing a “moonscape” beginning at historic Lees’s Corner, which was lost to fire Friday night.

RELATED: Lee’s Corner destroyed in wildfire

The members are gathering at the Anaham Band office to serve food and water as they wait it out, Grinder said, and will retreat to a safe location if they need to.

 

Anaham residents Cecil Grinder and Clayton Stump load up their vehicle with food and emergency supplies in Williams Lake Sunday evening with plans to take it back to community members in the evacuation zone in the Chilcotin.

Just Posted

School District 8 votes to move Grade 9 from LVR to Trafalgar

The board also delayed a decision on reconfiguring grades at Slocan schools

Storm prompts travel warning for Boundary, West Kootenay

Up to 25 cm expected on high mountain passes

Cops seize load of pot near Salmo

Traffic stop nets hundreds of pounds of cannabis

VIDEO: Octopus, bald eagle battle after bird ‘bites off more than it can chew’ in B.C. waters

B.C. crew films fight between the two feisty animals in Quatsino off north Vancouver Island

Raptors fans show Kawhi the love in his return to Toronto

Leonard receives championship ring, leads new club to win

Process to identify those killed in Gabriola plane crash could take days

Canadian flight museum suggests Alex Bahlsen of Mill Bay died in Tuesday’s crash

‘Honest mistake:’ RCMP says B.C. cannabis shop can keep image of infamous Mountie

Sam Steele wearing military, not RCMP uniform in image depicted in Jimmy’s Cannabis window

B.C. conservation officers put down fawn blinded by pellet gun on Vancouver Island

Young deer found near construction site in Hammond Bay area in Nanaimo, B.C.

Laid-off forest workers converge on B.C. legislature

Loggers call for action on strike, provincial stumpage

B.C. guide fined $2K in first conviction under new federal whale protection laws

Scott Babcock found guilty of approaching a North Pacific humpback whale at less than 100 metres

Feds urge Air Canada to fix booking problems as travel season approaches

The airline introduced the new reservation system more than three weeks ago

Almost 14,000 Canadians killed by opioids since 2016: new national study

17,000 people have been hospitalized for opioid-related poisoning

Most Read