Wildfires outside of Yellowknife are not likely to reach the city by the end of the weekend and a forecast four kilometre advance has not happened.
Municipal and Community Affairs minister Shane Thompson gave an update was given at 7 p.m. Aug. 20.
”We are still engaged in a long fight,” said Thompson. “It is not safe for residents to return to any community under an evacuation order.”
“We must be sure it is completely safe for residents to return home before revoking these orders. We have learned time and time again that situations can change quickly.”
Wildfire information officer Mike Westwick said firefighters were successful in suppressing growth. A forecast that the fire would advance four kilometres did not happen, which Westwick credited to the work of firefighters.
Work also continued on protections to the city.
“We completed infrared scanning on the perimeter today,” said Westwick, who said there were significant hot spots discovered. “Make no mistake, this remains an active fire.”
“I know its difficult watching from afar. But the threat still remains.”
Emergency Manager officer Jennifer Young said 19,000 people have evacuated from North Slave area, 6,800 people from South Slave area, 80 from Dehcho. A total of 12,500 people are in evacuation centres.
Young said reports of looting in evacuated communities are false.
“It is unsafe to stay in your community,” said Young. “If you are unable to drive out of Yellowknife specifically, there are still flights out of Yellowknife being arranged.
She encouraged people to call (867)-444-0115 or visit Sir John Franklin High School to register in person.
All evacuees sent out by Yellowknife by air to Winnipeg. Evacuees traveling by road are asked to travel to Alberta.
Anyone registered at an evacuation centre who is staying in a hotel can remain there until the order is rescinded.
On Aug. 19, Thompson noted there were approximately 1,600 people remain in Yellowknife who should not be.