A wildfire fighter in B.C. died while responding to the Donnie Creek wildfire in northeast B.C., according to Premier David Eby.
It’s the second firefighter death on the frontlines during the 2023 wildfire season in the province, following the death of teenager Devyn Gale on July 13.
The exact cause of death was not released, nor was the gender or age of the firefighter.
The B.C. Wildfire Service (BCWS) told CBC News in a statement that RCMP and WorkSafeBC are investigating the fatality, which happened on Friday.
Eby issued a statement over the death on Saturday afternoon, which said the firefighter died due to injuries sustained while working on the Donnie Creek wildfire.
“I am heartbroken that another firefighter was lost protecting our communities and our province during this devastating wildfire season,” it read.
“My deepest sympathies are with their family and friends, as well as their colleagues and the broader wildfire community — many of whom I know are still coping with the tragic loss of a colleague earlier this month.”
The firefighter’s identity has not been released, with the BCWS saying its primary concern was the privacy of their family.
4th wildfire fighter death across Canada
The death is the fourth such fatality among wildfire fighters in Canada this year, which is considered to be the worst wildfire year on record.
N.W.T. firefighter Adam Yeadon died on July 15, shortly after Gale’s death, while fighting a wildfire near Fort Liard, N.W.T.
On July 19, pilot Ryan Gould died after his helicopter crashed near Haig Lake in Alberta.
Friday’s death is the fifth linked to B.C. wildfires in the past 13 years.
John Phare, 60, was killed in 2015 while working on a blaze on the Sunshine Coast, northwest of Vancouver. Two air tanker pilots, Tim Whiting and Brian Tilley, died when their plane went down south of Lytton in 2010.