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Nearly 40,000 lightning strikes responsible for drastic boost in wildfires

Lightning strikes across the province over the past 48-hours has been a cause for concern for many British Columbians.

<who> BC Wildfire Services. </who> A lightning map from BC Wildfire Services for June 20. The coloured circles on the map below indicate where lightning struck.

A whopping 19,000 lighting strikes hit B.C. on Wednesday, only to be followed by another 28,000 strikes on Thursday. Officials say the nearly 40,000 strikes were responsible for 105 new wildfire starts across the province.

Kamloops residents were holding their collective breath on Thursday evening after lightning sparked a 60-hectare wildfire that led to the evacuation of 12 homes.

Crews were able to control the blaze by nightfall, however the aggressive grassfire was a serious reminder that wildfire season has officially begun.

On Friday, officials expanded burning prohibitions on open burns, fireworks, sky lanterns, tiki torches and other fire concerns were announced for the entire Kamloops Fire Centre region.

The 1,200 hectare Kolsch Lake wildfire near Prince George is currently the largest of the 205 total blazes burning in the province.

<who> Photo Credit: BC Wildfire Services.

According to officials, an estimated 1,000 wildfire fighters and over 100 contractors are currently deployed as B.C. prepares for another bout with fire season.

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