Sunday, 8 May 2016

Update on Alberta fires - 05/06/2016

Fort McMurray fires - winds from the south

Since reading Robertscribbler's article from yesterday I have been anxious about what is happening in northweatern Canada.

It looks very much from what I can ascertain that winds have indeed changed to the southerly winds and temperatures are forecast to reach 29C (I have taken the figures from Edmonton.

There is not going to be any let-up in the dry conditions that I can see (at least according to Climate Reanalyzer)

The following is what I have:

Nullschool shows warm winds coming from the south


Temperature anomalies

Precipitation today - I can see none forecast in coming days

Temperatures forcecast to reach 29C in Edmonton with a let-up in temperature from tomorow

Here is the latest report from CBC

Fort McMurray wildfire could cover 2,000 sq. km by day's end
Now covering 156,000 hectares, continues to grow to the northeast

A badly damaged swing set sits in a residential neighborhood destroyed by the fire in Fort McMurray, which is still burning out of control.
A badly damaged swing set sits in a residential neighborhood destroyed by the fire in Fort McMurray, which is still burning out of control. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

7 May, 2016,4:00 AM MT

As a new day unfolds, firefighters are again preparing to battle "the beast:" a fitting nickname for the Fort McMurray wildfire that has now burned more than 156,000 hectares and continues to grow.

Convoy of evacuees get 1st glimpse of fire-ravaged city
PHOTOS: Haunting images emerge from devastated streets of Fort McMurray
Darby Allen, the regional fire chief of Wood Buffalo, has been battling this out-of-control wildfire for a week now, and has taken to calling it simply "the beast."

Officials expect the fire to grow bigger on Saturday, and say by the end the day it could swell to 2,000 square kilometres, an area three times the size of Edmonton or Toronto.

Over the past five days, the fire has destroyed more than 1,600 homes and buildings, forced 80,000 to evacuate the city, and resisted all efforts to to try to wrestle it under control.

"We have substantially extreme fire conditions in front of us still for the next two days," Chad Morrison, senior wildfire manager for the province, said Friday.

Morrison said the winds are blowing from the southwest, pushing the fire northeast away from Fort McMurray and into forested areas. Temperatures of just under 30 C were expected Saturday, he said.

"I can tell you that the estimated size is now up to 156,000 hectares and continuing to grow to the northeast," Matthew Anderson, wildfire information officer with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, said early Saturday morning.

Officials will continue airlift efforts today to fly out evacuees who have been stranded in work camps north of the city for five days.

About 5,500 displaced residents were airlifted Friday, and officials hoped another 4,000 would be flown out Saturday.

Convoy from the north resumes

Other evacuees will drive out in RCMP-controlled convoys, which will take them through the burned city and on south to safety.

On Friday, more than 2,500 vehicles made it through the city, with the convoy halting only once when smoke, for a time, made Highway 63 impassable.

That work resumed at 6 a.m. MT, with police leading small convoys of 24 vehicles at a time.

A fuel station has been set up to provide gas to motorists waiting in line on the highway.

For those still north of the city, smoke has become an issue. Officials say they're concerned about air quality.

At the Noralta Lodge, the closest work camp to the city, a haze of smoke hung in the hallways and rooms overnight.

Officials are also worried about a shift in wind, which is expected to blow from the south toward the north.

Staying amidst the flames

Also Saturday, ​RCMP are expected to update the public on their ongoing search and rescue operation in Fort McMurray.

RCMP find people in Fort McMurray ignoring evacuation order

In a news release sent out on Friday RCMP said that despite the flames and smoke, some people have remained in in the city.

Late on Thursday, RCMP found a family of five, including three young children, during a door-to-door search of the Dickinsfield neighbourhood.

RCMP said the family did not leave because "they did not believe they were in danger."

RCMP also located an elderly man and his dog that evening. Both the family, the man and the dog have been since evacuated from the city. ​

Neighbourhoods and areas of the city frequented by homeless people are also being patrolled.

"People need to understand that evacuation orders are issued for a reason, and that not leaving puts them and emergency responders at unnecessary risk," said Insp. Gibson Glavin.

No comments:

Post a Comment