Crews continue to battle an out of control wildfire three kilometres southeast of High Level, with northeast winds and firefighting preventing its spread into the town.
The Chuckegg Creek fire is 97,600 hectares (976 square kilometres) according to Alberta Wildfire. Hundreds of firefighters are conducting controlled burns along local highways and between the fire and the town in their efforts to contain the fire and burn up materials which could become fuel if wind directions changed.
Firefighters are focusing efforts on containing the wildfire outside High Level. Yesterday a break in conditions allowed a controlled burn of some of the area between the wildfire and the town to consume materials that might have become fuel for the wildfire. #ABFire pic.twitter.com/90YrlylOa7
— Alberta Wildfire (@AlbertaWildfire) May 23, 2019
The town of High Level, as well as residents in the Bushe River Reserve area and parts of Mackenzie County south and southeast of High Level are still under a mandatory evacuation order. While a 25 kilometre stretch of the highway running through the town (Highway 35) is closed, residents are being told to evacuate via Highway 58 east and Highway 88 south.
Drivers heading south from the Northwest Territories will have an opportunity to gas up in Fort Vermilion, 390 kilometres from Hay River.
Gas stations in the county were closed earlier this week as power was off during the wildfire fight. The power is now back on in the area, however the wildfire service says it may be intermittent.