Edson Area Update

Edson Forest Area - FIRE BAN IN EFFECT - Wildfire Update - May 8, 2020

Posted on Fri, May 08, 2020


Grass and fine fuels are extremely dry and any spark, hot exhaust or friction can start a wildfire.  Grass catches easily and burns out of control quickly.  We ask that you use caution when you recreate or work in the outdoors and keep watch of your surroundings.  If you suspect a wildfire, call 310-FIRE.



The wildfire danger in the Edson Forest Area is MODERATE.  There are currently no active wildfires.

Since March 1, 2020, there have been 11 wildfires in the Edson Forest Area burning approximately 0.80 ha.  


There are currently 17 wildfires in the Forest Protection Area of Alberta. Eight of these wildfires are under control, two are being held and seven have been turned over to the responsible party. 

Since March 1 in the Forest Protection Area, there have been 118 wildfires burning a total of 50.40 ha.  

For more information on the current wildfire situation across the province of Alberta, visit wildfirestatus.alberta.ca

2020 Coal Spur Pres Burn (68)Alberta wildland firefighters conducting a hazard reduction burn on April 8th, 2020 near the community of Robb.


On April 8th Edson Forest Area's wildland firefighters conducted a very successful hazard reduction burn (HRB) around one of the burning coal seams located near the community of Robb.  Each year, the active coal seams pose a serious threat as the heat from the seam can ignite the dry grass surrounding the pits and start a wildfire.  The objective of the HRB is to reduce grass hazard, fire intensity and the probability of a fire escaping. 

Through rigorous planning, including safety protocols and regular weather monitoring, Alberta Wildfire carries out HRBs across the Forest Protection Area every year in locations where the possibility of a wildfire is elevated.  The HRB is set in stages and firefighters conduct a test burn near the already-built dozer guard surrounding the seam.  If this proves to be successful, the team will light the dry grass systematically, which allows firefighters to control and stop the operation if necessary. 

The team ensure that the burn is completely extinguished using hand tools and water, and that no hot spots remain.  The burn is then monitored as needed over the coming days to ensure no restarts emerge.


There is a fire ban in place inside the Forest Protection Area of Alberta.  Fire permits are suspended or cancelled. Some allowances can be made for essential agricultural and industrial burning, but will need to be approved by a forest officer.

These steps are part of a number of actions the department is implementing to help mitigate wildfire risks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Taking action in advance to reduce the number of human-caused wildfires will allow Alberta Wildfire to make the best possible use of resources when the availability of firefighters could be reduced because of the pandemic.

• Wood campfires on public lands.
• Wood campfires on private land and provincial campgrounds.
• Backyard firepits, and
• Barbeques with charcoal briquettes.

• Propane / natural gas powered appliances
• Open flame CSA approved oil devices
• Wood fires in an enclosed facility or device, which have a chimney with a spark arrestor
• OHVs

All devices must be CSA approved and used as per manufacturer standards. An enclosed facility or device is one that is fully contained with a chimney that has a spark arrestor. Users are still responsible for care and attendance of all devices and should reduce their use during fire restrictions and bans. Approved activities or devices will not prevent potential prosecution or litigation if the user or device starts a wildfire.

Alberta Agriculture and Forestry will be monitoring conditions, including the availability of firefighting crews and resources during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Fire Ban will remain in effect until conditions improve.

Please visit AlbertaFireBans.ca for a map of the affected area.


Albertans are always asked to use caution when working or recreating in the outdoors:  


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For more information, please contact:
Caroline Charbonneau
Wildfire Information Officer | Edson Forest Area
Cell: 780-740-1341