Whitecourt Area Update

Whitecourt Forest Area Wildfire Update - March 6, 2020

Posted on Fri, Mar 06, 2020


Wildfire Update - March 6, 2020

The wildfire danger rating for the Whitecourt Forest Area is LOW. There are currently no wildfires currently burning in the area.

Since March 1, there have been no wildfires in the Whitecourt Forest Area.

Since March 1 in the Forest Protection Area of Alberta, there have been 2 wildfires burning a total of 0.2 hectares.

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


The 2020 Wildfire Season starts March 1, 2020

With the exception of campfires, fire permits are required within the Forest Protection Area. If you plan on burning, please contact your local forestry office to request a fire permit.

Always ensure that you are burning within the conditions of your fire permit. Your permit will state factors such as wind speed that could affect whether or not burning is allowed. It is your responsibility to monitor these conditions and ensure that they are met prior to burning.

You must also continue monitoring the conditions throughout the burning, and extinguish any burning that is taking place should these conditions be exceeded.

All winter burning should be extinguished by March 1st


image-23Although it's cold and there is snow on the ground, conditions are favorable for holdover fires. A fire left smoldering can burn under the snow all winter long emerging as a wildfire in the spring.  Please be responsible and burn safely.

Be sure to extinguish your campfires

Soak it with water, stir it up and soak it again. The ashes should be cool to the touch.

Check your winter brush piles to ensure they are extinguished

  • STIR IT: spread out the remaining material within the pile using a metal probe, or if necessary, heavy equipment. Dig down into the soil to make sure the fire has not burned down to the root system.
  • SOAK IT: soak the area and ensure both heat and smoke are no longer being produced by the pile. 
  • STIR IT AGAIN: Roll the debris over. Using your bare hand, feel for heat while looking for steam. A fire is not out until there is absolutely no heat coming from the ashes.

Learn about safe winter burning practices and brush pile and windrow burning.

Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Safety

Off-Highway Vehicles (OHVs) include all-terrain vehicles, quads, trikes and other vehicles designed for travelling off public roads and on unpaved trails and terrain. Debris falling from these vehicles can start a wildfire. You can reduce the risk of your vehicle causing a wildfire by following some simple tips:

  • Before you ride, clean out hotspots and remove debris from your machine.
  • After riding through muskeg or tall grass, stop and remove any build-up.
  • Carry a small shovel, collapsible pail or fire extinguisher with you.
  • Make sure your muffler and spark arrestor are working properly.

For more information on preventing wildfires while using your OHV, visit our online brochure.

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Safe Campfires

If you are heading to the outdoors and plan on having a campfire, please build your campfire in a safe location. Here are some tips to ensure a safe campfire experience:

  • Keep your fire out of the wind and away from dry grass and debris.
  • Place a shovel and a pail of water nearby in case your fire gets away.
  • Remember: always soak your campfire, stir it, and soak it again to ensure it's completely extinguished.

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Never leave your campfire unattended. If you see smoke or flame in the forest, call 310-FIRE.

For more information, please contact: 
Provincial Information Officer
Phone: 1-866-394-3473
Email: wildfireinfo@gov.ab.ca


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