New wildfire near recovering Lytton, B.C. may have destroyed structures: officials

A new wildfire burning less than two kilometers northwest of Lytton, B.C., may have destroyed several structures, emergency officials say.

Rob Schweitzer, operations manager for the BC Wildfire Service fire center, said the 75-hectare blaze was first reported around 12:45 a.m. Thursday and was being fanned by gusty winds.

Four initial attack crews and two unit crews, a total of about 55 people, were on the ground and supported by helicopters and air tankers, he said.

Crews were to remain on site all evening and all night if necessary, he added.

The fire was declared the province’s first “significant wildfire” of the season.

Pader Brach, executive director of regional operations for Emergency Management BC, said officials believe three structures may have been destroyed.

Read more:

‘Fire war zone’: A look at the disaster that leveled Lytton and plans to rebuild 1 year later

Approximately nine people were under evacuation orders and several evacuation alerts were in place in Lytton First Nation. The Thompson Nicola Regional District also issued an evacuation order for 24 addresses in Electoral Area “I” (Blue Sky Country).

Food, shelter and clothing were made available to evacuees, he said.

Area phone, internet and cellular services, including access to 911, were also affected. Telus said the outage was the result of a vehicle collision that damaged some of its infrastructure in the Hells Gate area.

Brach said there were also five cell phone towers and a few landlines in the fire area, but was unable to say if they had been hit.

It’s been just over a year since the village was virtually burned down in the midst of BC’s record-breaking heat dome.

Two people died, while hundreds were driven from their homes.

Community reconstruction work has only recently begun. Residents have not yet been allowed to return.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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