High temperatures in the forecast for the BC Interior later this week may pose a new wave of wildfire threats to the province. The BC Wildfire Service says rain and cooler temperatures in the next few days will help mitigate two out-of-control blazes in the province’s northeast. But wildfire operations director Cliff Chapman says the precipitation isn’t enough to knock down the Red Creek and Boundary Lake fires, about 13-hundred kilometres northeast of Vancouver. At last count, the Boundary Lake fire was an estimated 59-thousand hectares, and the fire at Red Creek sits at 28 thousand hectares.
Flooding in the BC Interior has subsided into a “period of stabilization” for this week before new snowmelt is expected to push forth another round of heightened alerts by next weekend. BC Emergency Management Minister Bowinn Ma says much of the province’s southern Interior saw less rain than forecast on Sunday, resulting in communities like Grand Forks downgrading its flood warnings to advisories. But the BC River Forecast Centre says temperatures are expected to surpass 30 degrees in some communities by next Sunday, which may melt snow in higher elevations and trigger new flood warnings. Meanwhile, Cache Creek, 350 kilometres northeast of Vancouver, remains under flood warnings despite falling water levels.
A BC aerial firefighting company has made operational changes after one of its firebomber aircraft crashed in Western Australia in February A preliminary report by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau says Coulson Aviation has issued a bulletin, increasing its firebombers’ minimum speed and raising their minimum altitude for dropping retardant. A Coulson Aviation 737 was on a low-level drop of retardant on a fire when it clipped a ridgeline and crashed near Hopetoun in Western Australia on February 6th. In January 2020, three American crew members died when a Coulson Aviation tanker crashed on a firebombing mission in the Australian state of New South Wales.
Police in Victoria have arrested a man suspected of committing multiple break-and-enters and who has already been detained 12 times this year. Police say they received a call on Monday morning about a break-and-enter at a residential development, and arrested the male suspect after a brief search of the building. Police say the suspect is a newcomer to Victoria and had 44 prior contacts with police this year, in addition to having been arrested a dozen times. The suspect was not named, and now faces outstanding charges for car theft, uttering threats, indecent exposure and sexual assault in addition to multiple break-and-enters.
An injured hiker had to spend a night in the cliffs near Enderby, BC, 470 kilometres northeast of Vancouver, after going off-trail and falling down a slope. Vernon Search and Rescue say they responded to a request for help on the evening of May 3rd, after the injured hiker made an emergency call. Rescuers say they found the hiker after a search on-foot that evening, but the man had been struck by a boulder and suffered two serious leg fractures that would require a helicopter rescue. Rescue members from Vernon and Penticton completed the rescue on the morning of May 4th, and the man is now recovering in hospital.
Yukon’s government says it is investing 1-point-4 million dollars over the next year to support 44 mineral exploration projects in the territory. Officials say the funds will be delivered through the Yukon Mineral Exploration Program in 2023 and 2024, supporting projects that are expected to spend 4-point-6 million dollars this season. The program is aimed at helping early-stage projects while also stimulating new mineral discoveries, and reimburses eligible companies a percentage of their approved expenditures. Yukon received 57 applications for funding through the program for 2023.