May 13, 2023 Evening Update
Thank you to all those who are a part of battling the wildfires in Yellowhead County. This includes our firefighters as well as crews from across Alberta and Canada, Alberta Wildfire, heavy equipment operators, emergency responders, and residents around the County who have continued to work through this difficult situation. We thank you for working to protect Yellowhead County.
We also want to thank those who assisted evacuees throughout the wildfire situation including Reception Centre staff in Yellowhead County, Edson, Hinton, and Jasper, as well as staff in the Emergency Coordination Centre who have continued to be there for our residents.
On Thursday May 11 at 8:00 a.m., the remaining evacuated residents were able to return home.
Residents from the Hamlet of Wildwood, Lobstick Resort, Hansonville, and Highway 16A, and areas south of Highway 16 from Range Road 81 to Reno Road, as well as Highway 16A to Range Road 75 were able to return home.
We would like to acknowledge those who have lost their homes or received damage. This, of course, is one of the many tragedies caused by wildfires. Without the exhausting efforts put out by our firefighters, residents, and supporting communities and agencies, we may have lost more.
At this time, we don’t have a final number on the homes lost and damaged, as we’re still working on the assessment.
Please continue to support those in need, as everyone has been doing since this began. We’re stronger together and we need to continue to support each other.
With the hot weather continuing in our forecast, it’s important that everyone is aware of the potential dangers that still exist. Make plans and be prepared for an increase in wildfire activity and there are still several fires in our county with hotspots that could also flare up again.
There are currently no active evacuation alerts or orders in place in Yellowhead County, but we want to remind everyone that it is important to be prepared with an evacuation plan and your important items in the event of an emergency. For tips and advice, visit www.alberta.ca/beprepared.
– We want to remind residents that there is still fire activity and other potential safety concerns in some areas. Firefighters and emergency services are still operating in these areas. Anyone entering firefighting areas can impact and prevent firefighting efforts.
– We recommend that residents Firesmart their properties by removing debris, branches, and garbage from your area. Learn more at https://www.alberta.ca/firesmart.aspx
– Please make sure you are driving safe, as smoke may make visibility a challenge, and fire crews are travelling along these roads as well. Share the road and keep everyone safe.
– Fire crews from Alberta and B.C. are continuing to set up Structural Protection in Yellowhead County. They will be marking the area with ribbons. Please do not remove any of the ribbons, it is important that these stay in place.
Please be aware of the equipment and crews in the area and let them do their work safely.
This is currently happening in the following areas: from the McLeod River east of Edson to the southern town limits of Edson. And from Ansell Tower Road East to River Ridge Estates.
Fire Information from AB Wildfire:
(For full reports of these fires, visit srd.web.alberta.ca/edson-area-update)
Fire Southeast of Edson in Yellowhead County (EWF031):
There are 72 firefighters and support staff being shared between this fire and the smaller Carrot Creek Fire. There are 20 pieces of heavy equipment three helicopters, and five additional helicopters working on this fire. They are making good progress building containment lines on the northern flank and helicopters are aiding crews and heavy equipment with bucket support. An airtanker group is working the northwest corner of the fire today.
Minimal perimeter growth occurred yesterday, and there was a slow rate of spread. This was due to fair and stable weather conditions.
Fire North of Wildwood (WCU002)
No anticipated growth today.
2,401 ha in size
Fire from Parkland County into Wildwood Area (WCU001)
7,281 ha in size
Fire from Parkland County area through to Wildwood area.
– crews working north of Wildwood working in an area heavy with hotspots,
– crews travelling along Highway 16 extinguishing hotspots,
– crews and heavy equipment working adjacent to these fires extinguishing a peat pit
Shingbank Fire (EWF-035)
5,332 ha in size
Alberta Wildfire is assisting Yellowhead County and Woodlands County with this wildfire.
North side has a dozer guard, heavy equipment is working to complete the south boundary line, north side of the fire also has an almost completed contingency line which should be finished today.
Airtankers will drop retardant lines to provide more containment for the wildfire again on the northeast side of the wildfire. Helicopters will drop water to extinguish larger hotspots on the south boundary line. These perimeter lines will help build-up containment levels on the north and south side of the wildfire as this is a priority area.
Our emergency call centre will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Call 1-833-334-4630 with any evacuation-related questions.
Remember to call 9-1-1 during an emergency, including if you see fire. If in doubt, call 9-1-1.
A FIRE BAN and OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE RESTRICTION is in effect for the Forest Protection Area of Alberta, including the Edson Forest Area.
Do not fly drones in an area of active wildfire. Drones halt air operations and we will have to wait for the airspace to be clear. Drones can endanger our aircraft and crews that are needed to work on the wildfire.
Smoke is heavy in many areas. For more information on air quality, visit For more information visit https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/news/air.aspx. If you have questions specific to your health and the air quality, call Healthlink at 8-1-1.
Fire-specific information such as location, size, and perimeter can be found at srd.web.alberta.ca/Edson-area-update.
Information on the provincial funding for evacuees who have been away from their home for more than 7 days (total) can be found at alberta.ca/emergency. If you’re having trouble applying online, call 310-4455.
PHOTO: Wildfire activity on WCU001 – May 13, 2023 (Courtesy of AB Wildfire)