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B.C. state of emergency may end Friday

Sept. 14, 2017, Castlegar, B.C. - An official says British Columbia's provincial state of emergency is expected to be lifted soon as the record-breaking wildfire season begins to wind down.

Chris Duffy with Emergency Management BC says he believes the state of emergency will be lifted by the end of day Friday because fire conditions have improved across much of the province.

The declaration was originally made in early July as aggressive wildfires ballooned in the province's Interior, devouring large swaths of land and forcing thousands of people from their homes.

At the time, the province said issuing a state of emergency allows for better co-ordination of federal, provincial and local resources to ensure public safety.

Kevin Skrepnek with the BC Wildfire Service says 1,249 fires have burned across the province since April 1, costing the province more than $510 million for fire suppression alone.

The flames have charred more than 11,700 square kilometres, smashing a previous record for land burned set in 1958.

September 14, 2017
By The Canadian Press

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