More than 1,750 firefighters and support crew worked overnight on Monday to slow the spread of fire across New South Wales. (Wolter Peters photo/NSW Rural Fire Service)

BC firefighters to help battle Australian bushfires

Canada sent 22 people, including 7 from B.C.

BC Wildfire Service personnel have been sent to Australia to help with firefighting efforts.

The seven operational personnel are part of a contingent of 22 Canadians that have been deployed for 38 days, though the need to deploy additional resources in the coming months remains a possibility.

“It’s only late spring in Australia, but an early and extreme wildfire season in the eastern part of the country has already stretched Australia’s firefighting resources and led to fatalities, property losses and the destruction of large areas of New South Wales and Queensland,” said Doug Donaldson, minister of forests, lands, natural resource operations and rural development, in a news release. “Currently, Australia has about 1,100 firefighters working on its wildfires.”

According to news.com.au firefights have been facing long nights battling blazes stretching from New South Wales South Coast all the way to the Queensland Border. Several communities in New South Wales are threatened.

READ MORE: Bird populations significantly declining around Revelstoke says Parks Canada

This is the first time since 2009 that Australia has asked for firefighting support from Canada, though they sent firefighters to B.C. in 2017 and 2018.

“We greatly appreciated their assistance during those difficult years, and we welcome the opportunity to help out our Australian friends now,” said Donaldson.

BC people that are heading to Australia include:

  • planning section chief
  • two operations section chiefs
  • two air tanker group supervisors
  • air operations branch director
  • heavy equipment branch director

The crew flew into Sydney on Dec. 3, 2019 and will be returning Jan. 10, 2020.

READ MORE: World’s most extensive avalanche detection system launched on Rogers Pass


 

@JDoll_Revy
jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton Vees captain David Silye reflects on a season cut short, time in Penticton

‘It didn’t feel real at all’ said Silye of the moment he learned the BCHL playoffs had been cancelled

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Kelowna Rockets?

This quiz challenges the knowledge of those who claim to be the biggest Rockets fans

12-year-old Kelowna resident celebrates birthday with help of community

The community greeted Kate Pauling with ballons, banners and gifts along her paper route on Friday

COVID-19: More infected passengers on planes flying to and from Okanagan and Kamloops airports

The BC Centre of Disease Control has identified numerous flights with COVID-19 cases

Okanagan soup canned nearly 90 years ago gets taste test

YouTube shows man taking contents from old Bulmans Cannery vegetable mix and making, eating soup

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

Okanagan nordic centre loses out on 2021 nationals

Sovereign Lake near Vernon was to host 2020 Canadian championships, canceled due to COVID-19

Most Read