June 25th, 2024

Fort Nelson, B.C., evacuees heading home after being forced to flee wildfires

By The Canadian Press on May 27, 2024.

Fort Nelson, B.C. evacuees gather at the North Peace Arena in Fort St. John , B.C., on Monday, May 13, 2024. Residents in Fort Nelson are able to go home today after being evacuated for more than two weeks due to wildfires. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jesse Boily

FORT NELSON, B.C. – Residents in Fort Nelson are able to go home today after being evacuated for more than two weeks due to wildfires.

The Northern Rockies Regional Municipality and the Fort Nelson First Nation say they’ll jointly rescind their evacuation orders at 8 a.m., lift roadblocks and allow people to return.

About 4,700 residents were evacuated from Fort Nelson on May 10, when strong winds pushed the Parker Lake wildfire within a few kilometres of the town.

The fire destroyed four homes and damaged six other properties in the area.

Crews are also fighting the Patry Creek fire north of town, which is a holdover fire that was initially ignited by lightning in July 2023.

The regional municipality’s Mayor Rob Fraser has asked residents to be patient as they navigate what’s expected to be heavy traffic on the highway between Fort Nelson and Fort St. John, 380 km to the south, where many of the evacuees have been staying.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 27, 2024

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