News / Calgary

Fire near Alberta's Waterton townsite growing: Parks Canada

Parks Canada said in an update on the park's Facebook page Sunday that the Kenow fire now covers approximately 9,400 hectares

Waterton Park the day before the mandatory evacuation on Sept. 6, 2017.

Contributed by Terri Vidricaire

Waterton Park the day before the mandatory evacuation on Sept. 6, 2017.

Waterton Lakes National Park remains completely closed except to first responders as a fire continues to grow less than 20 kilometres away from the historic townsite.

Parks Canada said in an update on the park's Facebook page Sunday that the Kenow fire now covers approximately 9,400 hectares and weather conditions are expected to cause 'intense fire behaviour' until Tuesday.

Smoke is also hampering visibility in the area.

The Kenow fire's growth during the weekend.

PARKS CANADA

The Kenow fire's growth during the weekend.

Between Saturday morning and Sunday morning, Parks Canada siad the blaze moved five kilometres southeast along the Akamina Valley and could reach the Akamina Pass before Monday.

Fire crews from Calgary, Lethbridge, Coaldale, Taber and Willowcreek have arrived in the area to spot and fight fires at critical infrastructure in the townsite.

The town has also been encircled with an extensive high volume pump and sprinkler system and additional fire protection sprinklers have been installed on buildings.

An estimated 185 personnel are part of the effort, in addition to seven helicopters and plenty of fire engines.

The province says there are currently 670 firefighters, 72 helicopters, 50 pieces of heavy equipment and 16 airtankers available to respond to wildfires across Alberta.

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