B.C. wildfires: Nearly 300 active blazes; another evacuation order issued

A threatening wildfire has forced more residents from their homes as roughly 300 blazes are burning across British Columbia.

The Thompson-Nicola Regional District issued evacuation orders Sunday night for 13 properties near the 30-square kilometre White Rock Lake wildfire where 200 other properties were already on evacuation alert northeast of Merritt.

The order to get out is one of several posted over the weekend by regional governments across B.C.'s southern Interior.

It comes as the provincial organization that co-ordinates emergency support warns available accommodation for thousands of wildfire evacuees is strained to the limit in the Thompson and Cariboo regions, and some evacuees are being sheltered as far south as Chilliwack.

The BC Wildfire Service currently lists the wildfire danger as high to extreme across most of the southern half of B.C., while cool, damp weather has significantly dropped the danger rating in the northern half.

Thirty-seven blazes, 12 per cent of all B.C. fires, are rated as highly visible or a threat to life or property.

Flames from a roughly five-square kilometre fire are moving toward a key electrical transmission line west of Peachland.

Sixty properties east of Ashcroft were added to an evacuation order Saturday as a wildfire sparked last week has scorched 50-square kilometres in that area, but no structures or infrastructure have been lost since the village of Lytton was destroyed more than two weeks ago.