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Fire erupts on flooded hwy. in Abbotsford, B.C., sends toxic fumes into air

Wednesday, November 17th 2021, 8:00 pm - More than three dozen crew members are on the scene.

A large fire at an RV dealership in Abbotsford, B.C., was extinguished Wednesday after being battled by fire crews for several hours.

Firefighters responded to the blaze on Wednesday morning after it broke out near Highway 1, east of Whatcom road, an area that is currently flooded due to the major storm event that took place earlier this week.

Video taken by local media shows loud bangs coming from the area around the fire. According to the CBC, about 100 out of the 500 RVs on the lot were on fire as of 7:45 a.m. PT.

No injuries have been reported.

EVACUATION ORDER IN PLACE, STATE OF EMERGENCY DELCARED

A province-wide state of emergency went into effect Wednesday at 12:00 PT, allowing officials greater fliexibilty to keep goods flowing through B.C., as flooding has shut down several major roadways.

All residents in Abbotsford's Sumas Prairie region, which is low-lying, are being advised to evacuate immediately.

That order was put in place Tuesday, as water from neighbouring Washington sent pushed into the Sumas River, causing it to breach its banks. The situation escalated in the evening as the waters threatened to cause a failure at the Barrowtown Pump station.

That disaster has been averted for now after a team of 150 staff and volunteers worked into the night to set up a sandbag dam to stave off rising waters from Washington.

Speaking with reporters, Mayor Henry Braun said their efforts have "bought the city time" and protected the pump station, which was at risk of being inundated, which would have led to a potentially "catastrophic" situation, officials said in a statement.

The station's four pumps have been working at full capacity to move millions of litres of water per minute from the Sumas Prairie.

Classes at the University of the Fraser Valley have been cancelled classes for the remainder of the week. In Chillwack and Hope, schools were closed Wednesday.

PHOTOS: FIRE BREAKS OUT IN ABBOTSFORD AMID FLOODS

VIDEO: FIRE OFFICIALS SPEAK TO REPORTERS

Thumbnail credit: Twitter/TheRealP_I

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