Members of a tiny First Nation in northwest British Columbia are finally returning home after fleeing destructive wildfires last summer.
The emergency operations director for the Tahltan First Nation says when residents go home to Telegraph Creek they will find a changed community.
Feddie Louie says the evacuation order from the enormous Alkali Lake fire imposed in early August will be lifted as of 6 p.m. on Thursday.
She says $12 million has been spent making the community livable again after the 1,180-square-kilometre blaze destroyed 21 homes.
Louie says there is still much cleaning to do, a lot of smoke damage and some homes that were replaced aren’t ready yet for occupation.
She says eight modular units have been brought in as part of a new subdivision, and the rest of the homes will be completed by Dec. 20.
“The community was burned through. It wasn’t burned around, it was burned through. We lost 21 homes in that community and the homes that weren’t burned were heavily smoke-damaged,” she says.
“No one’s going home to anything that was the same before the fire.”
The Canadian Press