Cape Breton firefighters battling Alberta wildfires
Six Cape Breton firefighters are among a group of Natural Resources workers deployed to northern Alberta on Tuesday to battle intense wildfires in tinder dry conditions.
There are currently 95 fires burning across the Prairie province, including 11 ignited on Thursday alone, according to Nova Scotia’s director of forest protection John Ross.
A total of 16 firefighters volunteered for the two-week mission, 65 kilometres north of the hamlet of Lac la biche, Alta. The community is about a 2.5-hour drive northeast of Edmonton.
“They’re on the west side of the fire and they’ve been tasked with putting out flare-ups and hot spots right now,” Ross said on Friday.
The fire is considered out-ofcontrol at this point. The fire- fighters will be on mostly flat terrain with some hilly areas.
Alberta crews have been stretched to the limit and have asked other provinces for support through the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre.
This is the second deployment of Nova Scotia firefighters. The first group was sent to Alberta in early June.
The DNR crew that left Tuesday included John Burrell from the Baddeck office; Carey Ross and Kyle Romard from the Margaree office; and Julius Wukitsch, Nolan Boutilier and Bradley Wilson from the Coxheath office.
Lightning in the northeastern part of the province over the past 24 hours may have started more fires but crews should see a reprieve at the beginning of the week, Ross said.
“There is some rain forecast for the first part of next week, which will help.”