Rain in some parts of the province and cooler temperatures are having an impact on Saskatchewan’s wildfire situation.
As of Tuesday, just eight fires were burning, down from the 17 recorded on Monday.
It has bought a respite to all involved with fighting the wildfires in both Saskatchewan and Alberta.
Given the wetter weather, the Fort McMurray fire has for now stopped moving toward Saskatchewan.
“There is a sense of relief, but we are just at the beginning of the season and we have a lot of time ahead of us,” explained Duane McKay, executive director of emergency management and fire safety for Saskatchewan, Tuesday.
The lack of winter weather this year has left extremely dry conditions, so McKay isn’t taking anything for granted.
“The extreme forest and grass fires that we have seen over the last few days we are remaining vigilant,” he maintained. “In the event that something comes on we want to make sure that we area fully prepared and we aren’t, you know, ramping down too low.”
Fire ban in northwest Saskatchewan
A ban on all open fires is now in place for the northwest Saskatchewan forest.
The area, which can be seen in the map below, reaches from the Alberta border and as far east as Lac La Ronge.
This fire ban also includes all provincial parks and recreation sites within the ban area, including: Meadow Lake, Makwa Lake, Steele Narrows, and Clearwater River provincial parks, and Bronson Forest and Chitek Lake recreation sites.
On Wednesday, Lac La Ronge and Missinipe were also added to the list.
Prince Albert national park is not included in the provincial fire ban.
The burn notification numbers issued to those planning to burn in or near provincial forests have been revoked. Fireworks are also prohibited.
There has been no significant rainfall in this area recently, leading to extremely dry conditions. Fire bans are also currently in place in many municipalities in the province.
CSA-approved propane heating devices and barbecues, pressurized stoves, or charcoal briquettes used in a ministry-approved firebox will be permitted for cooking and heating purposes for the duration of the ban.
For a complete list of provincial parks and recreation sites affected by fire bans and restrictions, visit www.saskparks.net/FireBan2016.