Crews contain wildfire near Christopher Lake

Photo Courtesy Lakeland Fire Department/Facebook. An air tanker unloads on a wildfire burning near Christopher Lake on May 6, 2018.

The Lakeland Fire Department received assistance from the provincial wildfire management branch in containing a fire near the southeast part of the Village of Christopher Lake Sunday.

According to the fire department’s Facebook page, five Lakeland Fire Department trucks and 19 crew responded to the wildfire. They also received assistance from three wildfire management crews and air tankers. The fire grew to a total of 6.8 hectares in size before being brought under control, according to data from the province’s wildfire management website.

Throughout Sunday afternoon and into the evening, air tankers could be seen taking off from the Prince Albert airport.

As of 9 p.m., wildfire management remained to work on hot spots, but the fire had been put out. Crews will return in the morning to ensure the fire is fully out.

The fire was one of a few burning in the Prince Albert wildfire management area Sunday. Four other fires were marked as contained. One was burning 13 hectares near Wahpeton, a mere 13 km from Prince Albert. Another fire, this one about 3.7 hectares in size, was burning about 20 km north of Kinistino. The other two fires were burning near Highway 793, about 20 km west of Debden.

Two other out of control fires continue to burn. A 50 hectare fire is burning near Cumberland House, and a 4.5 hectare fire was out of control near Buffalo Narrows. A total of 12 fires are burning province-wide. So far there have been 90 wildfires inn 2018, well ahead of the five-year average of 48 for this time of year.

While there are no fire bans in place, central and southwestern Saskatchewan, including Prince Albert, remain under extreme wildfire risk. The majority of the rest of the province is at high risk, with only a small portion of southeast Saskatchewan, and the far north of the province, at moderate risk.