Current wildfire status update from Greenview Emergency Operations Centre
May 24, 2023 – 9:00 pm
Please note that the information in the following update is official information as provided by Alberta Forestry. Greenview strives to provide a timely high-level summary of active wildfires within Greenview and will post updates to evacuation orders and alerts as available and provided by Alberta Forestry and the Province of Alberta, which are incredibly busy managing the current wildfire situation in the province.
Additional map resources
Fire Information for Resource Management US/CANADA
Alberta residents who are looking to provide equipment or for anyone who is trained and qualified in firefighting looking to volunteer to help in the wildfire efforts is invited to send an email outlining their desire to assist to EmergencySupportOffers@gov.ab.ca
STURGEON COMPLEX (GWF017 & GWF023)
May 24, 2023 – 6:30 PM
The Sturgeon Lake Complex is made up of two fires. GWF017 is estimated to be 5752 hectares in size and GWF023 is estimated to be 3869 hectares in size. Both fires are considered “Being Held.” The status change means the fires are 100% contained.
The definition of “Being Held” is as such: sufficient resources are currently committed, and sufficient action has been taken, that the fire is not likely to spread beyond existent or predetermined boundaries under prevailing and forecasted weather and fire behaviour conditions.
The Quebec Incident Management Team (IMT) that has been managing suppression operations and the Debolt Fire Camp will be transitioning out today. An Alberta IMT arrived yesterday, and they will be assuming command of the incident as of 3:00 p.m. IMTs and crews generally transition out after a 14-day work shift in order to get some rest. This is a regular process that aims to keep personnel healthy and to ensure a continuity in operations.
Today there will be 129 firefighting personnel and 82 management and support staff on site. Eight helicopters and 16 pieces of heavy machinery are allotted to the fires. The change in types and numbers of resources reflects the equipment needs of the crews in order to complete their objectives. The recent precipitation will impact how the fires are suppressed.
Crews will spend the day assessing the fires and the terrain. The objective remains to find and extinguish hot spots along the perimeter and near structures. While the rain has greatly helped fire behaviour, it has made the job of finding the hundreds of remaining hot spots more difficult. Moreover, the muddy and slippery conditions have made accessing the fires more difficult. Should the weather clear up today, the helicopters will be used for reconnaissance flights and to ferry crews.
May 24, 2023 – 3:00 pm – The Evacuation Order for the area around the Sturgeon Lake Complex Fire has been lifted. Everyone in this area can return home but must remain prepared to evacuate with a 4-hour notice.
The Sturgeon Lake Complex Fire is still active. Nobody is permitted in or near the active fire perimeter. Check Alberta Wildfire Status Map for the most up-to-date wildfire information.
BALD MOUNTAIN FIRE (GWF019)
May 24, 2023 – 12:00 PM
This fire is classified as being held (BH) and is estimated to be 19,435 hectares in size. At this stage, the wildfire is not likely to spread beyond predetermined boundaries under expected conditions. Crews will finish establishing control lines and reclaiming some of the guard that was lost. Crews are working in the northwest and in the southeast corners securing a 50-foot perimeter.
The fire is approximately 17 km west of Highway 40. The fire has crossed Bald Mountain Road to the east and is in proximity to the intersection of Odum Ridge Road and Bald Mountain Road to the south.
47 firefighters, along with five helicopters, eight pieces of heavy equipment, four water trucks and various water transport equipment, are assigned to the fire today.
Updated May 23, 2023 – The Evacuation Order for the area south of Township Road 690, between Highway 40 and the BC Border has been lifted. Everyone in this area can return home but must remain prepared to evacuate on short notice.
The Bald Mountain Fire is still active. Nobody is permitted in or near the active fire perimeter. Check Alberta Wildfire Status Map for the most up-to-date wildfire information.
EAGLE COMPLEX – Fox Creek / Little Smoky (WWF023, WWF028, GWF027)
May 24, 2023 – 11:00 AM
WWF-023 detected on May 5, is listed as out of control at 73,478.6 ha. Firefighters saw no further growth towards Fox Creek today.
Crews continued working in from the perimeter along the fire guard along the Iosegun Lake road. Along the excursion south of Highway 43, firefighters built more hose line along the wildfire, and heavy equipment groups are establishing more fire breaks along that same line.
There are more than 139 firefighters and support personnel allocated to this fire, along with a structural protection unit and the Fox Creek Fire Department. Partners assisting Alberta on the complex include firefighters from Colorado, New Brunswick and soldiers from 1 Combat Engineer Regiment.
The weather has improved over the complex today, and helicopters are able to fly in support of firefighters on the ground. There are currently 17 helicopters assigned to the Eagle complex.
Additionally, three structural groups from municipalities in the Alberta Wildland Urban Interface Fire Structure Protection Program have been working together on structural protection for the community.
Weather Today, Showers and thunderstorms advance north into the boreal and taper as an upper-level low weakens. Expect the heaviest rainfall in the northeast foothills with 10-20 additional mm.
GWF-027 was detected on May 13 and is out of control at 55,344.4 ha. Two dozer groups and crews worked the southern edge of the wildfire today.
Updated May 24, 2023 at 12:00 pm
The Evacuation Order remains in effect for areas south along Highway 43 to Highway 947, including Townships to the west and southwest. Residents along Highway 43 between TWP RD 670 and TWP RD 650, including the Hamlet of Little Smoky, can now return home.
GRIZZLY COMPLEX (Big Lakes County) – SWF057, SWF063, SWF064
May 24, 2023 – 2:00 PM
SWF-057 is located approximately 26 kilometres south of Kinuso and over 30 kilometers southwest of the Town of Slave Lake. The wildfire is classified as out of control and has burned an estimated 16,728 hectares. Firefighters continue to extinguish hotspots along Highway 33 and the south perimeter of the wildfire.
SWF-063 is located approximately seven kilometers south of High Prairie and sixteen kilometers northwest of Swan Hills. The wildfire is classified as burning out of control and has burned an estimated 123,670 hectares. In the northwestern portion of the wildfire, firefighters continue to extinguish hotspots in the Banana Belt and East Prairie Metis Settlement areas. Heavy equipment has completed 85% of the fire guard on the southeast end of the wildfire. Heavy equipment will continue to build fire guard on the east side of the wildfire heading north.
East Prairie Metis Settlement remains under an evacuation order. Visit https://www.alberta.ca/alberta-emergency-alert.aspx
The Town of Swan Hills has lifted the evacuation order and is now under a four hour evacuation alert. Visit the Town of Swan Hills Facebook page for more information https://www.facebook.com/TownofSwanHills
SWF-064 is located over 40 kilometers northwest of Swan Hills. The wildfire is classified as out of control and has burned approximately 40,060 hectares. This wildfire has connected to SWF-063 to the north. One heavy equipment group is working on this wildfire and additional heavy equipment groups are expected to be deployed.
There are a total of 110 firefighters, 28 member incident command team and 114 pieces of heavy equipment on the Saulteaux and Grizzly Complexes. Today 21, helicopters will be conducting bucketing operations when visibility will allow them to. There are also 95 military personnel helping with transportation, safety, and various firefighting duties.
WILD HAY WILDFIRE COMPLEX (South East of Grande Cache EWF037 and EWF040)
May 23, 2023 – 7:45 PM
There are multiple wildfires located south of the Little Smoky River, north of the Wild Hay River and east of Hwy 40 north. These also include the areas near the Willow Haul Road and the Jack Wright Road north of Hinton. These wildfires were formerly reported as five separate fires, but due to more accurate GPS measuring, have been determined to be two larger fires.
EWF037 is being held at 578 ha and EWF040 is being held at 684 ha.
There has been no perimeter growth on this complex is several days. Smoke and flame may still be observed within the interior of both EWF-037 and EWF-040.
This complex is now being patrolled and monitored.
Important Things to Consider:
- Residents, businesses and industry are encouraged to proactively prepare properties as much as possible in the event of a wildfire. Read more at FireSmart/ Alberta.ca.
- Emergency preparedness is key. Residents outside the evacuation area are reminded to be prepared by:
- Packing important documents, medications, and clothing/personal items for 3 days
- Having a plan for your pets
- Downloading the Alberta Emergency Alert app from: alberta.ca/emergencyalert
- Learn more about wildfire preparedness at: alberta.ca/wildfire-preparedness.aspx