The wildfires raging across northern Alberta have forced about 10,000 people from their homes, according to numbers released by provincial authorities.
And the Western Canadian province is not going to get any respite in the coming days, officials said.
“This fight is going to be a tough one,” Devin Dreeshen, Alberta’s minister of agriculture and forestry, said Thursday. “The weather is not co-operating for the long-distance forecast for the next two weeks. It’s more of the same.”
Provincial authorities issued an emergency alert Friday morning telling all residents of Trout Lake, about 500 kilometres north of the provincial capital of Edmonton, to leave immediately.
A separate fire near Slave Lake, about 250 kilometres north of Edmonton, triggered an eight-hour evacuation alert on Thursday.
Municipal authorities said the flames were about 30 kilometres from Slave Lake, which was partially destroyed in a 2011 blaze, but officials wanted residents to be ready in case they needed to suddenly leave.
Meanwhile, more than a dozen homes have reportedly been destroyed by wildfire in Paddle Prairie Métis Settlement, CBC News reported Friday.
The wildfires have prompted a special-air statement for Edmonton, hundreds of kilometres south of the flames. Environment Canada warned residents that they may experience headaches, coughing, throat irritation or shortness of breath.
The province has seen more than 500 wildfires since March 1, officials said.
With files from The Canadian Press