Gateway Gazette

Northwest Alberta Wildfires: More Evacuees to Return Home

As cooler weather continues to create favourable conditions for firefighting, Bigstone Cree Nation and Wabasca-Desmarais plan for re-entry.

On Wednesday, June 12, residents from Bigstone Cree Nation and Wabasca-Desmarais will join the more than 6,000 evacuees from the following communities who are returning to their communities:

  • High Level
  • Mackenzie County
  • Dene Tha’ First Nation
  • County of Northern Lights, south of Twin Lakes Campground including Notikewin
  • Marten Beach (MD of Lesser Slave Lake)
  • Keg River/Carcajou
  • Peerless and Trout Lake communities

Residents in these communities remain on evacuation alert.

Evacuees can find tips on re-entry by visiting alberta.ca/emergency. Information includes making sure all your utilities are working to cleaning up, and how to deal with door-to-door salespeople offering services and insurance.

Approximately 4,400 evacuees are displaced due to mandatory evacuation orders for:

  • Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement
  • Bigstone Cree Nation (scheduled to return on June 12)
  • Wabasca No. 166
  • Parts of the MD of Opportunity No. 17
    • Hamlet of Wabasca-Desmarais (scheduled to return on June 12)
    • Hamlet of Sandy Lake
    • Chipewyan Lake Village

Current situation:

  • Approximately 3,500 people from Bigstone Cree Nation and the Hamlet of Wabasca-Desmarais will be able to return home on Wednesday, June 12.
  • Chuckegg Creek wildfire, southwest of High Level, is about 265,925 hectares.
  • Jackpot Creek wildfire, approximately 11 kilometres north of Lutose, is about 28,167 hectares.
  • McMillan Wildfire Complex, southwest of Bigstone Cree Nation, is more than 259,539 hectares.
  • Battle Wildfire Complex in Peace River is about 54,255 hectares.
  • There are more than 2,000 wildland and structural firefighters and staff, approximately 150 helicopters and 22 air tankers and 241 pieces of heavy equipment on these fires.
  • Check Alberta Emergency Alerts for more detailed and frequently updated information.
  • People driving in fire-affected areas should carry enough fuel, as it may not be readily available.
  • Be cautious of organizations not registered to solicit donations. For information on how you can help, visit alberta.ca/emergency.

Visit alberta.ca/emergency for detailed and frequently updated information.

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