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Fire-razed trees block B.C. roads

Some roads left unsafe from trees destroyed by fires
Some roads left unsafe from trees destroyed by fires

Nicole Kallmeyer, staff writer

August 30, 2010 — Wildfires have left fallen trees in the Pelican Lake area, causing dangerous road conditions.

Fire containment has increased across the province
Fire containment has increased across the province

Although cooler, wetter weather in B.C. has helped tame and taper many fires, their paths of destruction have yet to be cleared.

Large wildfires near Pelican Lake have created hazardous road conditions due to fallen trees. These trees collapsed after their root systems were weakened by the flames.

The Cariboo Fire Centre says that travellers in the area should drive at low speeds and expect blocked roadways for the next few weeks.

The largest fire in the Pelican Complex is currently 43,112 hectares and 40 per cent contained. Another hot spot spread over about 2,000 hectares is 50 per cent contained.

Air quality continues to improve
Air quality continues to improve

Almost half the fires in the Cariboo Region are no longer active. According to the Cariboo Fire Centre, the recent rainfall and cooler temperatures have allowed firefighters to increase guard construction and reinforce containment of all fires. Rehabilitation of affected sites is also well underway. Officials say “this may include such activities as grass seeding for erosion control, or fencing repair and replacement.”

As the fire risk continues to decrease across the province, evacuated residents are returning to their homes and officials are lifting campfire bans.

“For the long range, we're looking at possible thunderstorms and rain along with seasonal temperatures,” explains Dayna Vettese, a meteorologist here at The Weather Network. “These conditions are favourable to help the fire situation.”

Despite substantial progress, officials suggest that the public continue to exercise caution. “Fire season is not yet over.”

You can keep track of the risk in your area by heading to our Forest Fire Watch section of the website.

With files from Jill Colton

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