Poor air quality in Yellowknife as fire northwest of city grows to 2,400 hectares

The fire northwest of Yellowknife has nearly doubled since Saturday, but remains no threat to the city, according to an N.W.T. Fire update Sunday.

Fire still about 42 km from Yellowknife and remains no threat to city, says N.W.T. Fire

The out-of-control fire northwest of Yellowknife has almost doubled since Saturday, but it remains no threat to the city, according to an N.W.T. government update Sunday.

The fire is now about 2,400 hectares, up from 1,300 hectares wildfire officials quoted at the beginning of the weekend. On Friday afternoon, that number was 900.

The fire started from a lightning strike near Awry Lake on Thursday.

“Ground crews arrived at the fire yesterday, and will be deployed again today if safe to do so,” reads an N.W.T. Fire update on Facebook Sunday afternoon.

Crews are also building helicopter landing pads and controlled fire burning operations are continuing to burn off fuels on the east and northeast ends of the fire, according to N.W.T. Fire.

The fire still remains about 42 kilometres away from Yellowknife and is not a threat to the city, states the update.

Minimal precipitation is expected in the following days, and forecasts call for continued hot and dry conditions, says N.W.T. Fire.

Air quality statement for Yellowknife, Fort Smith

A special air quality statement was issued for Yellowknife on Sunday afternoon, citing pollution from wildfire smoke causing poor air quality in the city.

Environment Canada also issued a statement for Fort Smith and the Salt River First Nation Reserve area near the Alberta border. 

Earlier air quality statements over the weekend for Aklavik, Colville Lake, Tsiigehtchic and Fort McPherson have since ended. Those were mainly due to smoke from wildfires in Alaska.

Heat warnings are persisting across southern parts of the N.W.T., with temperatures reaching 30 C.

Wildfire smoke is blowing across the majority of the territory on Sunday, according to a live fire smoke map.

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