Photo taken Aug. 7, 2018 of the Island Lake wildfire burning through Francois Lake Provincial Park. Image: Facebook/John Calogheros

‘There’s been a lot of devastation:’ man whose family lost homes in B.C. fire

The provincial government declared a state of emergency Wednesday as more than 550 wildfires burn in every corner of B.C.

A father and daughter in Prince George say collecting donations for wildfire evacuees is personal for them, as many of their family members lost homes in a massive wildfire that ripped through northwest British Columbia.

Dan Edzerza Sr. and Kristina Michaud are volunteering their time to help even as they’re surrounded by growing wildfires and must be ready to flee at a moment’s notice.

The provincial government declared a state of emergency Wednesday as more than 550 wildfires burn in every corner of B.C., and residents of about 1,500 properties have been told to evacuate.

Related: Behind the fire line: B.C. firefighters stalked by cougars

Related: B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

Related: ‘Hot and dirty work:’ Commander describes fighting massive Ontario wildfire

Edzerza says there’s been a “lot of devastation” in Telegraph Creek, where flames destroyed more than 40 homes and properties including those of his relatives.

His son is among those fighting the fire on the ground.

Wildfire smoke has triggered air quality advisories across Western Canada, and Michaud says it’s so smoky in Prince George that it was dark at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.

When she went looking for masks they were sold out everywhere.

The federal government has promised to send 200 Canadian Armed Forces members to help. A first team of 100 members deployed early Thursday to an area west of Kelowna to start the mop-up of contained fires.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

B.C. reservists gather for military communications training in Chilliwack

Canadian Army’s communication skills are used in battle as well as domestic emergencies

VIDEO: ‘Heroes’ rescue teenager trapped in vehicle in water-filled ditch in Chilliwack

Two men sprang into action, holding 17-year-old’s head out of water as they pried open door

Sarah Wark rallies to beat Prince Edward Island at Scotties Tournament of Hearts

Wark wasn’t at the top of her game, but her team did enough to improve to 6-3 overall.

GW Graham junior boys play underdog role at basketball provincials

One of two at-large seeds in the 32 team field, the Grizzlies face a tough opponent out of the gate.

Unfinished business for GW Graham basketball Grizzlies at AA provincials

GWG’s senior girls squad advanced to the final before losing in 2018 and look to win it all in 2019.

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

Two boys saved after falling through ice in Coquitlam

RCMP say a Good Samaritan pulled the kids to safety

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

HBC shuttering Home Outfitters across Canada

North America’s oldest retailer is revamping its various stores to improve profitability

BC SPCA investigates Okanagan woman with prior animal abuse convictions

BC SPCA is investigating a property near Vernon

Most Read