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Fort Liard under Evacuation Notice, NWT Fire Responding to Multiple Fronts

NWT Fire has issued their first major wildfire update for the season.

Firstly, a new fire has been detected to the east of Sambaa K’e. The fire is located around 1km to the southeast of the community, and is believed to be caused by human action. Ground crews are already on the scene. The fire itself is smaller than one hectare, and winds are expected to push the fire to the west, meaning that the community is not at risk.

Near Dehcho, a suspected overwinter fire has emerged and is currently being assessed. It is located between the Enterprise and Highway 7 junctions of Highway 1, near the km 305 mark. Heavy smoke may be visible, and the nearest community is Jean Marie River. The highway is closed for the time being between mile markers 188 and 375.

The South Slave region has two fires that are being looked into. The first flared up due to heavy wind conditions on Pattersons road outside Hay River. The Hay River Fire Department is responding. The second fire is expected to be caused by human action and is being responded to near the Aurora Wood Pellets yard by Enterprise.

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To the east of Sambaa K’e, a fire that is believed to be caused by human action is currently out of control. The fire is smaller than one hectare, and ground crews have already been dispatched.

Meanwhile, the situation near Fort Liard has evolved. Due to the wind conditions, the fire was able to jump the Liard River, and risk has risen for the community. NWT Fire is working with the hamlet and nearby emergency management partners in their response.

The wind is expected to push the fire to the east throughout Friday night. The winds are expected to lighten up as the weekend progresses, and rising moisture levels should be able to halter the fire’s activity.

Emergency crews within the community continue to work on structure protection, but due to present wind conditions, direct action against the fire is not currently possible.

The community remains under evacuation notice.

UPDATE: As of 6:00pm on Friday, May 10th, the Alberta/NWT Border is closed, due to nearby fires. The affected area is along Highway 35, near Township Road 1172A (Zama City Access). Access to Zama City is still open.

UPDATE: The Patterson Road fire near Hay River has been extinguished. Hay River fire crews will be monitering the area for the next few days. The community was not at risk, as the fire was occuring near a previously burned area. Hay River remains under a full fire ban.

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