The B.C. government has given Port Alberni-based Coulson Aviation a short-term contract to help battle wildfires in B.C.’s Interior.
On Saturday, the company said it moved one of its firefighting helicopters to Kelowna International Airport in case the province wanted to make use of its services at a discounted rate.
In an update later that day, Coulson said the province presented it a five-day contract to support firefighting efforts in the region, from Aug. 29 to Sept 2.
The premier’s office tells CHEK News that the BC Wildfire Service was already contracting the use of one S61 helicopter from Coulson for most of the wildfire season.
The larger CH-47D Chinook helicopter that has been contracted for five days adds to the wildfire service’s fleet of eight other heavy duty helicopters.
In B.C.’s Central Okanagan region, residents have been offered bus rides to asses the damage to their homes.
The 126-square-kilometre McDougall Creek wildfire was still burning out of control as of Wednesday, and is part of a series of fires that destroyed or damaged nearly 190 properties in the area.
Meanwhile, in the Shuswap region, the threat of the Bush Creek East blaze has prompted a new evacuation order for 14 properties in the Sorrento area, where the fire has already destroyed or significantly damaged nearly 170 properties.
With files from the Canadian Press