NEWS
07/04/2015 14:49 EDT | Updated 07/04/2016 01:12 EDT

State of emergency declared in Port Hardy, B.C., as wildfire burns

PORT HARDY, B.C. - A state of emergency has been declared in Port Hardy, B.C., as a wildfire rages about 1.5 kilometres west of the Vancouver Island district.Mayor Hank Bood says about 100 homes have been evacuated but only about 10 people had to stay in hotels last night as most were with friends and family.He says the state of emergency was declared this morning as it allows the district to bill the province for its costly response operations.Bood says the fire is extremely unusual for Port Hardy, as it typically has a wet climate, and he is warning residents to obey the province-wide campfire ban.The B.C. Wildfire Service says air tankers were able to complete retardant drops on the fire but it is burning in a heavily timbered area with strong winds.More than 150 wildfires are burning in B.C., including an 80-hectare blaze in the Okanagan that has forced the evacuation of 141 Kelowna homes.