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Thousands are being evacuated from wildfires in Canada

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Northern lights formed a backdrop around a wildfire near Fort Nelson in British Columbia on Saturday. Photo: Ministry of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship / The Canadian Press / AP / NTB

Of NTB | 14.05.2024 00:39:30

Accidents and natural disasters: In the remote town of Fort Nelson in the northeast of the province of British Columbia and a nearby indigenous community, 4,700 residents have been ordered to evacuate. That is according to the province’s crisis management minister Bowinn Ma.

The evacuation is linked to one of the year’s first major forest fires in Canada. The fire covers 524 square kilometers and was 2.5 kilometers away from Fort Nelson on Monday.

In the neighboring province of Alberta further east, firefighters and helicopters are battling 45 active fires, including two that are out of control.

Traffic on some railway lines in British Columbia and Alberta was suspended later Monday due to the wildfires.

It is also burning in the province of Manitoba. There, 550 people were evacuated at the weekend as a forest fire of 350 square kilometers quickly approached the mining town of Flin Flon, which is located on the border with the province of Saskatchewan.

Canadian authorities are bracing for what could be another season of potentially devastating wildfires. Last year was the worst forest fire year on record in the country, where over 150,000 square kilometers of terrain were scorched from coast to coast.

Authorities in British Columbia had registered 137 forest fires in the province on Monday morning, including 14 fires that were out of control.

Smoke from the fires has drifted south and triggered warnings of poor air quality in the US states of Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

(© NTB)

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