Some 25,000 Canadians were forced from their homes by 103 wildfires that broke out in the western province of Alberta, an "unprecedented situation" as a senior official called it on Saturday.
Thousands more were warned to be prepared to leave their homes at any moment.
This Canadian province, one of the largest oil-producing regions, "has been experiencing a hot dry spring and with so much firewood, a few sparks are enough to start some really terrifying forest fires," the prime minister told a press conference. from Alberta, Danielle Smith.
"These conditions have resulted in the unprecedented situation our province is facing today." Smith said some 122,000 hectares had burned so far.
Nearly all of Alberta and much of the neighboring province of Saskatchewan, as well as a wide swath of the Northwest Territories, face extreme fire risks, according to a federal government fire danger map.
Federal Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair tweeted that Ottawa was ready to provide federal assistance if needed.
Oil sands facilities were closely monitoring the hazards, but none have reported interruptions in their production.
Drayton Valley, population 7,000 and about 140 kilometers west of Edmonton, was among the communities evacuated as firefighters battled a wildfire.
About 550 kilometers north of the provincial capital, a serious fire consumed 20 homes, a general store and a police station in the Fox Lake community. Residents were evacuated by boat and helicopter.
Residents of the town of Edson, with a population of more than 8,000, were also ordered to "evacuate immediately."
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