Most B.C. wildfire evacuees allowed to return home

Photo courtesy Pete Warren showing a forest fire in Kelowna, B.C., July 17, 2014. (Pete...

Photo courtesy Pete Warren showing a forest fire in Kelowna, B.C., July 17, 2014. (Pete Warren/Calgary Sun/QMI Agency)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:10 AM ET

More than a thousand Kelowna, B.C., residents displaced by wildfires were able to return to their homes Sunday after evacuation orders were lifted - but they were told to be ready to leave again.

"The Smith Creek Fire is still active, and residents returning to their homes will remain on evacuation alert and should be prepared to leave their homes on short notice," Emergency Info B.C. said in a statement.

Another 300 people in 132 homes remained on evacuation order as of Sunday evening.

Crews had made "excellent progress" containing the wildfires that have been ravaging the area, the Wildfire Management Branch said, and the fires were 50% contained, though remained approximately 260 hectares in size.

About 200 out-of-province firefighters headed to B.C. over the weekend to help quell the blazes. They had help from rain and cool weather, which allowed officials to downgrade many of the fire danger ratings in the province to low or moderate on Saturday.

Officials said the wildfire is suspected to be "human-caused."

 


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