British Columbia has endured a devastating wildfire season in 2023. With the peak of fire season having arrived, impacts have been felt throughout our province, from Northern BC, to Vancouver Island, and the Okanagan.
Tragically, these fires have driven many from their homes, shrouded our province in clouds of smoke, and left small businesses picking up the pieces. During this extremely challenging time, several resources are available to business owners to help manage the day-to-day situation and plan for their rebuild.
Below, we have gathered the currently available resources and we will continue adding to this document as further resources come online.
Prepared BC - Emergency Plan for Small Businesses
This resource is designed to help small business owners plan and prepare for emergencies that could interrupt operations. Use this template as a starting point and add to it as needed. One simple step today can make a difference in how effectively your business responds to and recovers from a disaster.
Suffered damage to your property during the wildfires? Learn about the steps you need to take regarding permits, zoning and building/fire codes. These codes apply to the construction, alteration, repair and demolition of buildings.
The wildfires don’t just take a financial and environmental toll, they’re also challenging for the mental health of those impacted by them. Find mental health resources to navigate you through this challenging period from the Canadian Mental Health Association.
Residential and commercial customers who are affected by an evacuation order are eligible to receive a credit for the electricity consumed for the duration of the time they’re out of their home, if the order is for five days or longer. BC Hydro also offer flexible bill payment plans for when you’re able to return home.
We respectfully acknowledge our place of work is within the ancestral, traditional and unceded territories of the Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaʔɬ/sel̓ílwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and that we serve the Peoples of the many Nations throughout British Columbia.