More than 13,000 people have been evacuated as wildfires rage in Alberta, western Canada. Among the worst affected areas is the Cree Nation of Little Red River in the north of the province, where 20 homes and the police station were caught in the fire.
The town of Drayton Valley of 7,000 people, 140 km west of the provincial capital Edmonton, was also among those evacuated on Thursday evening.
Until last week, spring temperatures were cold in western Canada, but the sudden warm weather brought fires and flooding. In some places, the temperature was 10 to 15 degrees above average for this time of year.
– This is much more wildfire activity than we typically see at this time of year, says Christie Tucker, communications manager for Alberta Wildfire, according to The Guardian.
– It will be warmer, windier and we expect extreme wildfire activity. Firefighters are ready for what could be an extremely difficult day.
There have been 348 recorded wildfires in the province of Alberta this year. Firefighters fear the wildfires will intensify.
In the province of British Columbia, in the far west of Canada, flooding swept away homes and closed highways in several towns. The fire department expects flooding to worsen over the weekend with heavy rain.
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