Edmonton firefighters battle 3 brush fires in warm weather

City of Edmonton officials said the city’s warm weather made fighting three brush fires on Tuesday difficult for firefighters. 

Crews were called to two nearby brush fires in the Mill Creek Ravine near Connors Road at around 3 p.m. after trail users spotted flames.

Five trucks responded with 20 members on board. 

District Chief Todd Weiss said the terrain and the heat were challenging for crews.

“You’re out at 29 degrees slogging through the bush,” Weiss said. “It’s pretty thick and it’s very hot. So we just have to worry about crews making sure they drink enough and don’t succumb to heat exhaustion.”

Temperatures in the high 20s are expected to last until at least Sunday in Edmonton, according to Environment Canada’s long-range forecast.

District Fire Chief Todd Weiss on scene with crews in the Mill Creek Ravine. (Peter Evans/CBC)

Fire crews were also called Tuesday evening to a third fire near Saskatchewan Drive.

Crews responded to the area of 119th Street and 74th Avenue to reports of a bush fire.

Eight fire trucks were at the scene as well as a hazardous materials team.

An Edmonton fire spokesperson says the roof of a house adjacent to the trees also caught fire but was quickly attacked by crews who were already in the area responding to the bush fire.

Weiss says the fire risk in the city right now is very high.

City of Edmonton currently has fire restrictions in place.

“You’re allowed a fire in your backyard as long as it’s a registered fire, like it adheres to the regulations,” Weiss said. “You can go out into a park and have a propane fire but not a wood fire in a fire pit.”

Weiss also reminds smokers to be careful with their cigarette butts.

“Please extinguish them in your car in the ashtray and [don’t] throw them out the window,” he said.

The fire restriction also means fireworks and open burns are not allowed.

Much of the northern part of the province is under a fire ban while fire advisories are in place south of Edmonton.

Further information on fire bans around the province can be found here.  

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