Premier Rachel Notley and members of the media toured parts of Fort McMurray to see firsthand, the devastation left behind by a wildfire that continues to burn in the region.
Fort McMurray’s fire chief says 85 per cent of the northern Alberta city is still intact despite a devastating wildfire that invaded several neighbourhoods.
Darby Allen says people may be under the impression that most of the city has been levelled, but that’s just not the case.
He says that between 40 and 50 per cent of Fort McMurray could have been destroyed if firefighters hadn’t been able to hold back the flames at key points.
Reporters are getting a blow-by-blow account from Allen as they tour the city on a bus.
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley is also getting her first look on the ground, and has warned people to steel themselves for the images they will see.
In Ontario, a restricted fire zone is in place for much of the northwestern portion of the province due to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires.
The Ministry of Natural Resources says fire bans will remain in effect until conditions improve.
Officials say unusually dry spring conditions have resulted in more forest fire activity, noting the long-term weather forecast offers no relief.