“Fire Apocalypse” in Canada

Thousands of people are fleeing their homes under eerie red skies in British Columbia as raging fires headed toward major population centres.

Thousands of residents were evacuated Monday after “exceptional” high winds ignited dozens of wildfires across British Columbia, sending flames toward entire communities.

On Sunday, hundreds of people left their homes under orange skies filled with smoke as evacuation orders came in one by one. Most of the new evacuation orders came in the Kamloops area, where some of the largest and most dangerous fires in the province are burning.

There are at least a dozen wildfires in the Kamloops Fire Centre area, including fires in Litton, White Rock Lake, Tremont Creek and Sparks Lake.

Officials confirmed Monday that the White Rock Lake fire has “significantly damaged” several buildings in the Killiney area north of Kelowna on the shores of Okanagan Lake.

There was also “limited damage” in West Kelowna to the south due to a separate fire in Mount Lowe.

“Due to evolving conditions, crews have not been able to complete a full assessment of damage to structures. Additional information will be provided to property owners and the media as it becomes available,” the Central Okanagan Emergency Management Office said in a statement.

In the northwest west of Kamloops, more than 730 homes remain in evacuation status due to the sudden intensification of the Tremont Creek fire. Dozens more homes in the Cherry Creek area, south of Highway 1, are in evacuation status.

The North Okanagan was one of several parts of the interior left in dark red twilight in the middle of the day Sunday after thick smoke obscured the sun.

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