Saprae Creek under evacuation alert due to a nearby wildfire

Update, 8:00 p.m. April 21: Wood Buffalo RCMP are advising the public not to operate drones in the vicinity of the wildfire.

Police say drones have been seen flying in the area of the wildfire, grounding helicopters attempting to fight the blaze. The RCMP say this is a significant risk to public safety, as helicopters are a critical part of fire suppression.

The RCMP are reminding drone operators that flying in the vicinity of a wildfire is a violation of Canada’s Aeronautics Act and carries severe penalties.

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An Emergency Alert is being issued for Saprae Creek Estates in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) due to a wildfire.

Alberta Wildfire is currently actioning a forest fire near Saprae Creek prompting the RMWB to issue an Evacuation Alert for residents of Saprae Creek Estates. According to information issued by the Municipality, the fire is spreading towards the community.

The evacuation alert differs from an evacuation order. Residents of Saprae Creek are being asked to be prepared to leave, but are not being ordered to do so.

Under the Evacuation Alaert, residents of Saprae Creek are being advised to:

  • Be aware and stay informed by following official and trusted channels such as and Municipal Twitter (X) or Facebook
  • Download the Alberta Emergency Alerts App
  • Follow local media sources
  • Arrange with neighbours to advise one another of an emergency notification
  • Prepare a 72-hour emergency kit 
  • Make an emergency plan for your household
  • Close all windows
  • Keep all combustibles at least 1.5 metres away from your home and propane tanks and woodpiles at least 10 metres away
  • Move all unused patio furniture to a shed or safe storage facility
  • Take other proactive steps to prepare households and properties. View more FireSmart tips at home

A spokesperson for Alberta Wildfire told Harvard Media News the fire is currently 30 hectares, roughly the size of 55 CFL football fields.

Alberta Wildfire is fighting the blaze with two, eight-person fire crews, five helicopters, and two water-bomber units.

Environment Canada reports winds in Fort McMurray are blowing out of the northeast at 10 kph and are expected to remain until late tonight.

If you or someone you know is struggling, Alberta maintains a 24/7 mental health crisis line at: 1-877-303-2642 (Toll free), you can also contact Some Other Solutions locally at: 780-743-4357.

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