A looming forest fire has prompted a full evacuation order in Pelican Narrows.
The northern Saskatchewan community, about six-and-a-half hours from Saskatoon, had previously planned to evacuate about 450 of its approximately 2,900 residents due to health concerns caused by heavy smoke in the area.
However, by early Wednesday, leaders had made the call to issue a mandatory evacuation order for the entire community.
Councillor and vice-chief Harold Linklater posted to Facebook early Wednesday morning stating that, while firefighters were working to keep the flames away, the nearby Preston forest fire was threatening the community.
Linklater urged residents to heed the evacuation order, writing that buses would be escorted in and out of Pelican Narrows for as long as possible. He wrote that boats would be available as a last resort to transport people across nearby Pelican Lake and out of harm’s way.
As of 5 a.m. Wednesday, the Pelican Narrows area remained under an Environment Canada statement due to poor air quality.
Linklater’s full post appears below:
On top of these evacuation, word came down yesterday afternoon that the resort community of Jan Lake has declared a state of emergency, due to smoke concerns from area wildfires. Jan Lake is along the same highway as Pelican Narrows.
Most of the community is seasonal, therefore the majority of residents will relocate to their permanent residences. However, 15 permanent residents will self-evacuate or leave to stay with family and friends rather than requiring shelter.
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