As people head outdoors this holiday weekend, authorities in the Northwest Territories are urging extreme caution when it comes to fires.
Although temperatures are set to drop compared to highs earlier this week, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources says many areas of forest remain “critically dry” – particularly in the south of the territory.
“These dry conditions are expected to continue throughout the long weekend and throughout the rest of May,” read a statement posted on the territorial government’s NWT Fire Facebook page.
“In these conditions, the likelihood of deep burning persistent fires, which are difficult for crews to control, exists.”
Anyone heading out over the holiday weekend is warned not to leave campfires unattended, and to make sure any fires are totally out before moving on.
“Wet the ashes, stir them and wet them again,” insists Thursday’s government warning. “The fire is out and it is safe to leave when you can put your hand over the remains and feel no heat from it, or can touch the ashes.”