Firefighters in British Columbia are dealing with an unprecedented wildfire outbreak that has left thousands homeless and destroyed homes and vehicles.
The massive blaze broke out late Sunday and has burned more than 10,000 hectares of land, forcing authorities to evacuate homes and close roads.
Firefighters have been battling the blaze in the city of Burnaby, north of Vancouver, and have been evacuating people from homes and schools.
There are fears the fire could burn for several days before it is contained.
“It’s not going to be contained overnight.
This is going to burn for a few days, possibly even a couple of days before the fire is extinguished,” said fire chief Rick Smith.
Smith says the fire was caused by a lightning strike and that a number of people have been evacuated to safety, including some residents of nearby Mount Pleasant.
Smith said there are no indications of injuries, but he said the fire has caused significant damage to homes and other buildings.
“The number of homes that have been damaged is staggering.
There are a number that are completely destroyed.
They’re absolutely devastated.
They’ve been destroyed,” he said.”
You could hear the fire on the radio for hours and hours and it’s still going on.”
The fire has forced the closure of roads around the area and forced thousands of residents to leave their homes.
Smith described the damage as unprecedented, and he said firefighters are going to continue to fight the fire, which is also known as the Kootenays Fire.
“We are going into a very difficult situation in terms of trying to contain this fire.
We have an enormous fire in a remote part of our province,” Smith said.
The fire started in a small clearing about 100 kilometres east of Vancouver on the outskirts of Burnley.
There have been no reports of injuries.
Smith expects the fire to burn on for days, and said it will continue to spread until the fire burns out.