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Home News Long, hot Saskatchewan summer could increase wildfire risk, says Public Safety

Long, hot Saskatchewan summer could increase wildfire risk, says Public Safety

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Long, hot Saskatchewan summer could increase wildfire risk, says Public Safety
A wildfire burns northeast of Prince Albert in May 2021. The SPSA anticipates an above-average fire season based on weather models, which predict a long, hot summer. -- Daily Herald staff photo.

With an average to above-average risk of wildfires expected across the province this summer, the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) is asking Saskatchewan residents to remain cautious and practice fire safety.

During a technical briefing on Monday morning, the SPSA said Saskatchewan is currently experiencing a slow start to wildfire season, thanks to cool spring temperatures that help mitigate the risk of fires, but weather models are predicting a long and hot summer to follow.

“The above-normal conditions mean the province could experience an average to above-average fire season,” said SPSA President Marlo Pritchard.

Wildfires that start this early are typically human-caused, which can spread “fairly quickly”. The remainder of fires are sparked by lightning, something that the province doesn’t normally experience at this time of year, added Pritchard.

“We urge everyone to take extra fire precautions during the spring and early summer months,” he said.

Anyone planning a controlled burn is asked to contact the SPSA or check their website for information on fire bans.

There are currently 13 active wildfires across the province that were caused by people, with only one considered uncontained. Most of the fires are less than two hectares in size, said the agency.

So far, four regions, including Duck Lake, have declared a fire ban.

According to the SPSA, around 90 per cent of their seasonal staff have already completed training and are ready to tackle this year’s fire season.