Wildfire near Fort Smith, N.W.T., almost contained, says territory
Significant progress has been made to contain what has been described as an out-of-control fire 16 kilometres west of Fort Smith, according to the N.W.T. government.
The fire, just past Bell Rock along Highway 5, is not growing and crews have almost finished creating perimeters around it, Mike Westwick, the territory's wildfire information officer, said in an update early Saturday afternoon.
He said crews are also intentionally burning wood, grass and other fuel around the perimeter's edge to limit how the fire could grow.
"No damage has been reported to structures or infrastructure in the area and highways remain open," the update said.
It goes on to say the community of Fort Smith is not under "any threat," though smoke and fire will be visible from the town and the highway.
Four wildfire crews are working on the fire, which is the territory's second of the season, and is said to have started when fire escaped a burn pile.
Saturday's update doesn't say how much land the fire has consumed, but in the territory's first statement about it Friday night, it was said to have covered 22 hectares.
The first fire of the season is 30 kilometres northeast of Fort Smith, and is called a holdover fire — meaning it stayed active under snow throughout the winter.
The territory says it's still burning and is one hectare in size, posing no threats to community, cabins, or infrastructure.