05/13/2015 07:36 EDT | Updated 05/13/2016 05:59 EDT

Little Bobtail Lake fire burning over 8,000 hectares

The Little Bobtail Lake fire has grown significantly in the last day burning nearly 8,000 hectares by Wednesday afternoon.

The wildfire — roughly 70 kilometres southwest of Prince George, B.C. — has forced 80 people to evacuate earlier this week. 

There are 120 firefighters, five helicopters and 10 pieces of heavy equipment responding to the incident today.

B.C. Wildfire Management Branch says the fire is showing unpredictable behaviour.

Melissa Klassen, a spokeswoman for the Prince George Fire Centre, says the amount of wood in the region left dry and damaged by beetle kill is also fuelling the fire. 

She does not expect the conditions to improve over the next few days. 

"What's challenging fire suppression efforts is this is the second year in a row that we've had higher than normal drought conditions in this region which is making this fire gain momentum as it burns through these very dense forest fuel," she says.

Evacuation orders were issued for properties near Little Bobtail Lake and Naltesby Lake (Bobtail Lake) by the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, and for Norman Lake by the Regional District of Fraser-Fort George.

An evacuation alert was also issued for other nearby areas on Monday morning, meaning residents should be prepared to leave at a moments notice if the fire spreads.

Google Maps: Little Bobtail Lake fire