Out-of-Control Wildfires Cause Evacuations in Western Canada

In this photo provided by the Government of Alberta Fire Service, a burned section of forest in the area near Edson, Alberta, smolders, Saturday, May 6, 2023. (Government of Alberta Fire Service/The Canadian Press via AP)

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Fire crews battled wildfires threatening communities in western Canada on Sunday as cooler temperatures and a bit of rain brought some relief, but officials warned the reprieve came only in some areas.

Officials in Alberta said there were 108 active fires in the province and the number of evacuees grew to about 29,000, up from approximately 24,000 Saturday, when a provincewide state of emergency was declared.

See also  Families of California Wildfire Victims Slam PG&E

Two out-of-control wildfires in neighboring British Columbia also caused some people to leave their homes, and officials warned that they expected high winds to cause the blazes to grow bigger in the next few days.

Provinicial officials in Alberta said the weather forecast was favorable for the next few days, with small amounts of rain and overcast conditions. But they cautioned that hot and dry conditions were predicted to return within a few days.

“People have called this season certainly unprecedented in recent memory because we have so many fires so spread out,” Christie Tucker with Alberta Wildfire said at a briefing. “It’s been an unusual year.”

See also  California Wildfires Some of Largest in State History

Colin Blair, executive director of the Alberta Emergency Management Agency, said accurate damage reports were not yet available because conditions made it difficult to assess the situation. There were of buildings destroyed in the town of Fox Lake, including 20 homes, a police station and a store.

In northeastern British Columbia, officials urged residents to evacuate the areas around two out-of-control wildfires near the Alberta border, saying there were reports of some people staying behind.

“This is impeding the response and putting their lives and the lives of firefighters at risk,” said Leonard Hiebert, chairman of the Peace River Regional District.

A third fire in British Columbia was burning out of control 700 kilometers (430 miles) to the south, in the Teare Creek region, and some residents near the village of McBride were evacuated.

See also  California Governor Criticizes New PG&E Board Plan

Topics

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

Stay in the loop with our wildland newsletter.

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Fire crews battled wildfires threatening communities in western Canada on Sunday as cooler temperatures and a bit of rain brought some relief, but officials warned the reprieve came only in some areas. Officials in Alberta said there were 108 active fires in the province and the number of evacuees grew to […]

Get The Wildland Firefighter Newsletter

Related Articles

Lawn Mower Sparks Wildfire That Prompts Evacuations in WA

Lawn Mower Sparks Wildfire That Prompts Evacuations in WA

Donald W. Meyers – Yakima Herald-Republic, Wash. Jun. 11—A lawn mower hitting a rock sparked a wildfire that prompted the evacuation of several Terrace Heights homes Tuesday. East Valley firefighters were called around 3:05 p.m. for a brush fire burning in the area of...