With the situation in Fort McMurray not getting any better, Premier Brad Wall has issued this statement as to how Saskatchewan is helping our provincial neighbour..
Both our Wildfire Management (WFM) branch and our Emergency Management and Fire Safety (EMFS) office and have been in contact with their Alberta counterparts to offer and provide assistance.
WFM is supporting Alberta wildfire response along our shared border to free up their resources. WFM is also providing air strikes in Alberta. We have not moved aircraft to Alberta but we have aircraft attacking new fire starts in Alberta. This has already occurred on a new fire north of Fort McMurray and will occur at any other location they require. We also have cleared the use of the airstrip in Buffalo Narrows to provide refueling and retardant supply to any aircraft working the fires.
EMFS is sending a team to Alberta to assist in the Emergency Operation Centre. Once our team is there, we will determine what further assistance they need and we can provide. We are also assessing possible locations in Saskatchewan that may be available to house evacuees, should that become necessary.
Meanwhile, the fire risk in our own Province remains high and so our officials will ensure that our resources and assets are at the appropriate level to be prepared for any event in Saskatchewan.
Wall is at a meeting of Western Premiers in Vancouver. Alberta’s Rachel Notley has sent another member of government to take her place as she stays at home to deal with the ongoing situation in Fort McMurray.
The Red Cross is taking donations for the victims of the Fort McMurray fire. There are several ways to donate.
There is an online form to make donations simpler.
You can also make a $5 donation by texting REDCROSS to 30333.
You can also call toll free: 1-800-418-1111