Most Williams Lake wildfire evacuees have been cleared to return home | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Most Williams Lake wildfire evacuees have been cleared to return home

Many Williams Lake wildfire evacuees are saying goodbye to the cots at the Sandman Centre in Kamloops as they return to their homes.
July 27, 2017 - 2:13 PM

WILLIAMS LAKE - The Cariboo Regional District downgraded the evacuation order for most of the homes in and around Williams Lake to an alert at noon today, July 27.

Along with the reopening of Highway 97 both north and south of the city, it means residents can return home but still must be ready to evacuate again at a moments notice.

The residents that remain under evacuation order and are not allowed to return home yet are those who live in the areas north and south of Mountain House Road including Wildwood, at Spokin Lake, along Soda Creek Road and Frizzi Road, the Soda Creek First Nation and areas in the Chilcotin, according to Regional District's Emergency Operations Centre.

Regional District chair Al Richmond signed the order allowing residents to return home, but says if you don`t have to go back right away you may want to hold off.

"We are looking forward to people coming home," Richmond says. "We're also encouraging people seriously, if you are somewhere safe and comfortable, you may want to pause for a day or two and see if things change."

The Regional District and RCMP are warning drivers to expect significant delays as Canadian Armed Forces personnel assist the Mounties in the re-population efforts. The process of getting residents home and operations at Cariboo Memorial Hospital up and running again is expected to last well into next week.

Thousands of Williams Lake residents have been staying in Kamloops since July 15 when their community was put on evacuation order.

For information on evacuation alerts and orders, go here.

For the latest information on fire activity and size, go here or follow @BCGovFireInfo on Twitter.

For a list of road closures and available detours, go here or follow @DriveBC on Twitter.

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