Alberta’s wildfire season is starting early this year, on February 20.
This means that fire permits will be required for burning within the Forest Protection Area, except for a campfire. The early start is due to the drought conditions occurring in many areas of the province, which could lead to elevated fire danger if we do not receive significant rain in the spring.
If you see smoke or flame in the forest and suspect it's a wildfire, call 310-FIRE.
Forest officers are currently hiring 11 lookout observers for the forest area. The first lookout is scheduled to open April 10 (Athabasca Lookout February 2024).
This update is best viewed on a web browser or the AB Wildfire Status App | To view previous Edson Forest Area Updates - Click here.
FIRE PERMITS ARE REQUIRED
All current winter burns will need to be fully extinguished by today unless you have a fire permit, with the exception of campfire in the Forest Protection Area of Alberta. If you require a fire permit for any new or existing burning, you can apply online or contact your local forest area office.
To request your free fire permit, contact the local forest area: (780) 723-8527 or you can request your permit using the online fire permit portal.
We ask that you plan ahead, there may be delays for a forest officer to visit your site. For more information regarding fire permits, you can view our video by clicking here.
Stay informed of fire restrictions and fire bans in your area by checking Alberta Firebans.
CHECK YOUR WINTER BURNS
Remember to revisit all fall and winter burn piles today and throughout the spring. When checking your winter burns, spread around any remaining debris so you can probe the area for hotspots. If you see or smell smoke or feel heat with your bare hand, the fire is still burning. Douse any remaining hotspots with water and stir up the ashes. A fire is not out until there is absolutely no heat emanating from the ashes. If fires aren’t properly put out, they can spread and burn underground or under the snow and ice. Under the right conditions, these fires can re-emerge in the spring as wildfires.
JOIN ALBERTA WILDFIRE AND YOUR COMMUNITY LEADERS AT ONE OF THE MANY FIRESMART OPEN HOUSES!
To learn more, visit FireSmartAlberta.ca
EDSON FOREST AREA WILDFIRE UPDATE
The wildfire danger in the Edson Forest Area is LOW. The lack of precipitation and exposed dry vegetation could pose a wildfire threat year-round. Ensure you keep watch of your surroundings when possibly causing spark, hot exhaust or friction and check your winter burns. When you complete your winter burn, make sure it's fully extinguished. A burn can smoulder beneath the ground for days and weeks, resurfacing when conditions are favorable to start a wildfire.
Wildland firefighters are on standby and ready to respond if a wildfire does start. We ask that if you see smoke or flame in the forest, report it to 310-FIRE.
Since January 1, 2024, there have been three wildfire in the Edson Forest Area burning a total of 5.07 ha.
There are also six carry-over wildfires from the previous year, all are classified as under control. Of the active wildfires, one is human-caused, four are caused by lightning and two remain under investigation.
The wildfires will continue to be monitored for activity and be actioned by local wildland firefighting crews when needed. A reclamation plan has begun and equipment have started working on identified areas. This work is anticipated to continue into the winter months.
None of these wildfires pose a threat to any communities or properties, including the Town of Edson. To learn more about wildfire classifications, click here.
Visit our website and click on the interactive map to view active wildfires, their locations and stats on the wildfire dashboard.
Are you interested in joining the Alberta Wildfire team this summer? We hire a variety of positions and a number of these positions are now available to apply on. Check out our website to learn more!
WILDFIRE PREVENTION TIPS & TOOLS
Albertans are always asked to use caution when working or recreating in the outdoors:
- Before you burn it, get your fire permit. Fire permits in Alberta.
- Clear debris from hot spots on your off-highway vehicle.
- Ensure your campfire is out - soak it, stir it, soak it again.
- Before you head out this weekend, check out the albertafirebans.ca website or download the app to stay informed.
- For road closure information, please visit 511.alberta.ca
- For information regarding smoke in the area, you can visit firesmoke.ca
- NASA FIRMS Fire Information website is a great resource to give an idea of the location of wildfires in the area, but note that the data is based on interpolation and often can make the wildfire look larger then it actually is.
- To view the provincial wildfire danger map, click here.
ALBERTA WILDFIRE INFORMATION
- Subscribe to the Edson Forest Area wildfire update to receive an email when new information is posted.
- Download the Alberta Wildfire App for Apple and Android device.
- Join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
For more information, please contact: