May 22, 2023 Update
Even with significant rainfall in some areas, current Evacuation Orders, Alerts, Fire Bans, OHV Bans, sprinkler protection units, and firefighting efforts in Yellowhead County continue until a more detailed assessment and confirmation of fire activity have been completed.
High humidity and cooler temperatures helped to reduce fire activity yesterday and rain and cool temperatures are forecasted today. Alberta Wildfire asks everyone to use caution when near wildfire areas and wildfire operations. Avoid walking on burnt areas which could have hazards that are difficult to see and other unknown hazards. If you see aircraft in the area, move away from the area to allow them space to work. Give firefighters room and the time they need to complete their tasks.
There is currently an Evacuation Order for East of Shining Bank Lake remains in place which was expanded Friday, May 19th to North of CN rail line above Niton and east of RR110.
The Evacuation Order is for everyone in the area: North of CN Rail Line above Niton, east of Highway 32, South of Township Rd 570 east to Range Rd 130, south to Township Rd 561, and east of Range Rd 110. Residents in this area need to evacuate.
A Reception Centre is set up in Edson. Evacuees can register at the Reception Centre or call 1-833-334-4630. Reception Centre Hours for May 23rd are 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
An Evacuation Alert was issued on May 16, 2023, for everyone in the area: North of Highway 16 to the CN rail line north of Niton, east of Highway 32 to west of Highway 751 and includes Niton Junction. Residents in this area need to prepare to evacuate.
Be prepared with an evacuation plan and gather your important items, documents, pets, food and water in the event of an emergency.
Structural Protection crews in Yellowhead County have been initiating their system over the last several days and are now prepared to action approximately 100 homes in Yellowhead County. Special flagging of different colours marked ‘SPU’ are set up on these properties to help firefighters identify operations for that property. This is to identify the placement of pumps and structural protection sprinklers. Please do not remove the flagging.
There are rapid attack crews in place that will respond to any new developments or flare-ups.
A downturn in weather is expected over the next few days with a chance of isolated or scattered rain and thunder cells in the vicinity of the fire tonight through Tuesday.
Yellowhead County crews are continuing to maintain work throughout the night in the Shiningbank area with increased crews and staggered shifts, as well as continuing to work on other wildfire areas.
Thank you to all those who are a part of battling the wildfires in Yellowhead County. Please be aware of the equipment and crews in the area and let them do their work safely. We thank you for working to protect Yellowhead County.
Smoke is heavy in the area and is affecting roadway visibility. The smoke is coming from the fires in our area, as well as from fires across the province and in BC. Please remember to turn your headlights on, drive safe, and be cautious of anyone working in the area.
If you’re struggling with the smoke, please visit https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/news/air.aspx for advice related to wildfire smoke. If you have questions specific to your health, call HealthLink at 8-1-1.
The Fire Ban and OHV Ban remain in effect at this time.
For current fire bans and OHV bans, visit www.albertafirebans.ca/
For details on what is allowed and what is not allowed, visit www.alberta.ca/fire-bans.aspx
LEAVE ALL EQUIPMENT ALONE
Do NOT tamper, remove or take any equipment from any areas within the fire zone. This equipment is required by firefighting staff and can impact fire response as well as put firefighters at risk for serious injury or death.
We want to remind everyone that areas in Yellowhead County still have fire activity.
Firefighters and others are operating in these areas. Please be aware and drive responsibly for their safety and yours.
Wildfire Information from Alberta Wildfire:
For specific wildfire information on each of these fires, visit srd.web.alberta.ca/Edson-area-update.
Fire Southeast of Edson in Yellowhead County (EWF031):
113,244 ha in size
Fire from Parkland County into Wildwood Area (WCU001):
7,281 ha in size
Fire North of Wildwood (WCU002):
2,400 ha in size
Shiningbank Fire (EWF-035):
18,608 ha in size
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.
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.
View our live-streamed update from 2:00 p.m. today here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?ref=watch_permalink&v=1295203947769535
View our post on protecting your health when it comes to smoke and air quality here: https://www.facebook.com/yellowheadcounty/posts/610848864412402. Call 8-1-1 for information specific to your health.
View our post on FireSmarting your property here: https://www.facebook.com/yellowheadcounty/posts/610850121078943
PHOTO: Flames from EWF-035. [May 19, 2023]
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