Today is the day that could tell a lot about how things will go when it comes to the Hay River-Kakisa wildfire.

The latest from the fire showed no new loss or damage overnight in either the town or to any landmark/property. The size of the blaze remained at 417,359 hectares or, as Hay River Mayor Kandis Jameson put it during Thursday’s press conference, six times the size of Edmonton. It was 1 km west of the Hay River Merlyn Carter Airport and 1.5 km west of the town centre.

Mike Westwick, wildfire information officer with the Department of Environment and Climate Change, stated Friday morning that winds were expected to be gusting as high as 60 km/h during the day, which could see flames move to the east.

Another threat is embers hitting neighbourhoods and surrounding areas, he added, and that was going to be a focus for firefighters Friday.

Kakisa is still not under any immediate threat from the fire as it remained 12 km southeast of the community — Westwick stated that good progress was being made on that side of the fire.

Additional helicopters and equipment have been made available for crews to try and continue to do whatever they can to keep the flames at bay.

Westwick stated that helicopters and airtankers would do flyovers and dump water on targets so long as visibility remained acceptable.

James McCarthy

I've been hanging around the office as the sports editor for the better part of the last 16 years. In August 2022, NNSL Media decided to promote me to the managing editor's position, which I accepted after...

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