Australian fire crews arrive to support B.C. wildfire suppression efforts

More than 45,000 residents have been forced to leave their homes

Fifty experts from Australia are expected to arrive today to help with the wildfire battle in British Columbia’s central and southern Interior.

Fire information officer Navi Saini says they’ll put the Australians where the need is greatest, taking advantage of their expertise in equipment, technology and logistical support.

The experts arrive as 155 wildfires burn across the province and more than 45,000 people are forced from their homes.

Related: UPDATED: BC wildfires – What brokers need to know

Apart from concerns for their property, many evacuees are also worried about the pets and livestock they left behind.

RCMP Staff Sergeant Annie Linteau says officers took a man into custody after finding him in an evacuation zone trying to feed a friend’s pet – an issue she says could have been avoided if the owners followed procedure and contacted their regional government for help.

The Cariboo Regional District says the B.C. SPCA is also increasing its efforts to rescue or care for animals left behind in evacuated areas, and they’re encouraging residents to contact the SPCA if they need help.

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Transcontinental Media G.P.