Nine Thousand Evacuees in P.G.
Prince George, B.C. – Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall says there are now nine thousand plus evacuees from the Cariboo wildfires in Prince George and the Emergency Operations Centre is preparing for the next steps.
“Logistically we are in pretty good shape” Mayor Hall told the evacuees who attended last evening’s town hall session, “We’re talking about how we can continue to sustain this and we know where we’re at with CNC.”
The College of New Caledonia is the Emergency Reception Centre, and is providing lodging for hundreds of evacuees inside the college and to those who are camped or in RV’s on its grounds, but it won’t be long before the College will also be expected to accept students.
“School is going to start in the early part of August where students register, so we understand that” says Mayor Hall. He says the Emergency Operations Team is making plans daily . He also said there is a possibility those in RV’s may be moved from the CNC grounds to another location, although it is too early to give specifics.
One of the issues that has arisen for evacuees is the food vouchers.
Most evacuees don’t have the capacity to store the amount of food a single voucher is intended to buy, so Mayor Hall says the Emergency Operations Team is trying to work with the Province and other organizations as well as the vendors, to see if those vouchers can be broken down into smaller amounts so evacuees can buy just what they need for a day or two. “We knew there would be some bumps along the way” said Mayor Hall, “We need to know about those bumps and one of the biggest ones we are trying to take care of and streamlining is our voucher process.” He says they are looking at issuing 14 day vouchers to spare evacuees from having to return to CNC to renew their registration “Our hands are somewhat tied, because we can only get so much flexibility from the various emergency services organizations that we deal with , but we are trying desperately to streamline this entire process for you and that has to be one of the most onerous we have so far.”