Vancouver’s air quality affected as several wildfires rage out west. (Postmedia News)
A forest fire burns on a mountain lake in British Columbia on June 26, 2016. (Postmedia News)
British Columbia’s fire season, which officially starts in late June, is usually the second largest on record over the past 120 years, behind only the 2003 season, which burned more than 20.5 million hectares in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
This year’s season has so far burned more than 5.5 million hectares.
The total number of fire detections from the province so far is 19,955, which is higher than the 19,827 detections in all of 2014 and the 17,879 detections in the province’s first seven months of 2015.
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These totals do not include fires that ignited on Vancouver Island in the past few days, as the Island has no fire protection service in the public air, so such detection is not recorded.
However, according to reports from the Environment Canada fire weather centre, the smoke from the Island’s fires is being blown to Metro Vancouver and neighbouring areas in the Lower Mainland.
As of Wednesday morning, the province’s Air Quality Index recorded levels that were in the “unhealthy” range. As of Tuesday, the Province-wide Air Quality Index recorded levels that were in the “unhealthy” range. (Vancouver International Airport)
The smoke could affect people who live in urban centres, such as Vancouver, Vancouver International Airport, the Fraser Valley and other parts of Metro Vancouver.
The smoke was also affecting residents in the Fraser Valley, B.C.’s North Island, and as far away as the Yukon.
The smoke was also affecting people who live in rural communities in places like Fort Nelson, as well as the Interior of B.C.
There are conflicting reports