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article imageEvacuations ordered for wildfires in Alberta and British Columbia

By Karen Graham     May 16, 2016 in Environment
A rapidly growing wildfire fed by high winds in north-western Alberta and a similar wildfire in north-eastern British Columbia means another difficult week for Canada's firefighters.
The weather has not been cooperating with fire crews in the two provinces, and the wildfire situation is likely to get out of control again. High temperatures and high winds are thwarting firefighters efforts to control the blazes, forcing officials to issue evacuation orders.
Alberta wildfire information
In Alberta, CTV News is reporting a mandatory evacuation order was issued Sunday evening in the Municipal District of Greenview because of a blaze between Fox Creek and the hamlet of Little Smoky. The fire is burning on either side of Route 43 near an energy industry plant.
Officials asked that evacuees report to an evacuation center set up at the Paradise Inn in Valleyview, east of Grande Prairie. People who were not planning to stay at the Paradise Inn were asked to at least check in even if they did not plan on staying there. The hotel allows small pets and there is a shelter for large pets located at the Valleyview Agricultural Grounds.
Temperatures in the area are expected to rise through the week, and there is a possibility of rain on Wednesday. The area had already imposed a fire ban because of the extremely dry conditions. This latest emergency comes just two weeks after the massive wildfire in Ft. McMurray forced the evacuation of 80,000 people.
Wildfire in north-eastern British Columbia
In British Columbia, fire information officer, Kevin Skrepnek says the Fort St. John area is still the hardest hit region, with 41 out of the provinces 62 active wildfires. But high winds and rising temperatures are not helping in getting the fires contained.
Skrepnek says that Environmental Canada is calling for temperatures of up to 26 degrees C (79 degrees F) today and strong, sustained winds of 40 to 60 kilometers per hour (25 to 37 miles per hour). He added that these conditions caused the Beatton Airport Road and Siphon Creek wildfires to grow over the weekend, reports CTV News.
BC's evacuation order was issued Sunday for 130 homes near the 150 square kilometer (58 square miles) Beatton Airport fire. The siphon Creek fire is now estimated to be 616 square kilometers (238 square miles) in size, with about 25 percent of this fire being on the Alberta side of the provincial boundary. The CIFFC is reporting the National Preparedness Level is at Level 3.
More about canadian wildfires, evacuation orders, fort St john, fox creek, High winds
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