Canadian military boosts air support to help B.C. flood evacuations, supply chain chaos

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The Canadian military is sending more air support to help with the evacuation of B.C. residents struggling under devastating floods that have overwhelmed the province and cut off vital transportation links over recent days.

Defence Minister Anita Anand said Wednesday that in response to a request for help from the B.C. government, the federal government is deploying more military air support crews to assist with the crisis.

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“In response to a request for assistance from the province of British Columbia, CAF personnel and resources will help residents as they experience floods, landslides and extreme weather,” she said in a tweet, though did not specify the resources being deployed.

Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair said the support would focus on assisting “with evacuation efforts, support supply chain routes, and [to] protect residents against floods and landslides.”

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Three military helicopters and a search-and-rescue aircraft were sent into the Fraser Valley earlier in the week after hundreds of people were trapped on roads and cut off from help by landslides.

According to the Royal Canadian Air Force, the aircraft and crew were able to evacuate a total of 311 people as well as 27 animals to safety in the city of Agassiz.

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A spokesperson for the Canadian Forces told Global News details of the deployment are still being worked out but that it will be a new and distinct federal assistance effort.

More to come.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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