The wildfire danger for the Whitecourt Forest Area is VERY HIGH. The conditions are expected to continue to be dry and hot for several days.
Wildfire Update - May 28, 2019
There are 2 wildfires burning in the Whitecourt Forest Area. WWF-032 is located 20 kilometres northwest of Highway 32, 25 kilometres northeast of Highway 43, and 11 kilometres northeast of the Sakwatamau River. This wildfire is out of control, and is being fought by firefighters, airtankers and heavy equipment. WWF-033 has a status of being held, and is 3.60 hectares in size.
A Fire Ban and Off-Highway Vehicle Restriction is in effect in the Forest Protection Area for most of central and northern Alberta, including the Whitecourt Forest Area.
Bans and restrictions are put in place based on current and expected wildfire conditions and available resources. At this time we do not have capacity for any additional risk
We are monitoring conditions very closely. Not all areas of the Whitecourt Forest Area have received the same amount of rain as others. When it is safe to do so the fire ban will be lifted. Any changes or updates to the current fire ban situation will be updated on the www.albertafirebans.ca website.
All permits are suspended. No new permits will be issued during this time.
The Fire Ban will include:
What is Prohibited:
- All open fires including campfires in campgrounds, back country and random camping areas and backyard fire pits.
- Charcoal briquettes, turkey fryers and tiki torches.
- Fireworks and exploding targets.
- The use of off-highway vehicles for recreational use on all public lands.
What is Allowed:
- Portable propane fire pits that are CSA approved or UL certified.
- Gas or propane stoves and barbecues that are CSA approved or UL certified and are designed for cooking or heating.
- Catalytic or infrared-style heaters.
- OHVs for industrial use, agricultural use, and traditional use by Indigenous peoples, as well as use on private lands
Never leave a campfire unattended. Soak it, stir it and soak it again until cool to the touch to ensure it is extinguished. If you see a wildfire, report it immediately by calling 310-FIRE.
The Fire Ban and Off-Highway Vehicle Restriction (starting May 22 at 1400hrs) will remain in effect until conditions improve.
What is Prohibited
- The recreational use of OHVs on public lands and provincial parks, including designated OHV trails.
What is an OHV?
- An “off-highway vehicle” is a motorized vehicle designed to go beyond defined roadways, including but not limited to:
- Side by sides;
- Dirt bikes;
- 4x4 Jeeps;
- Pick-up trucks; or
- Sport utility vehicles.
The OHV restriction does not apply to private land or agriculture, institutional (educational), commercial/ industrial, emergency response or Indigenous peoples who use OHV for traditional use.
To view a map of the Fire Ban/OHV Restriction visit www.albertafirebans.ca
Fire lookouts are on high alert constantly watching for smoke, as well as patrols in helicopters. Various pieces of heavy equipment, air tankers, helicopters and firefighters are ready to respond to any new starts.