Recent heavy rain in parts of British Columbia has done little to quench major wildfires burning near the cities of Kamloops and Cranbrook.

The St. Mary's River fire north of Cranbrook has burned close to 41 square kilometres and forced residents in 51 homes to evacuate, although an evacuation order of 16 homes in the Aq'am First Nation community has been rescinded.

The nearby Canadian Rockies International Airport says it's "business as usual" with flights on time after the same fire threatened the site last week, forcing crews to conduct controlled burns around the airport.

Near Kamloops, crews continue to battle the 26-square-kilometre Ross Moore Lake wildfire, which triggered the evacuation of almost 350 properties as strong winds fed its rapid growth over the weekend.

Both blazes are among the more than 270 fires in B.C. classified as out of control.

There are about 480 active fires across British Columbia and almost 15,000 square kilometres of land has burned, surpassing a record set at the end of the 2018 wildfire season.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 25, 2023.

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