It was May 01, 2016 when the Fort McMurray Wildfire began. Fort McMurray is an urban area in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo in Alberta, Canada. It is in northeast Alberta, in the middle of the Athabasca oil sands and surrounded by boreal forest. The fire continues to spread and it swept through the community.
What next for Filipino Community
According to The Filipino-Canadian Association of Fort McMurray, Alberta, there are about 8,000 Filipino Fort McMurray residents which are also affected. There is no timeline for residents including foreign workers to be allowed back into their into their homes but the government has begun preliminary planning although it stressed that fighting the fire is still the priority. A news circulated that foreign workers including Filipinos might force to leave Canada since they don’t have any jobs but Immigration is looking at the situations to see if temporary foreign workers would be allowed an extended stay in Canada.
How did the Wildfire start?
Forest fires always start either naturally caused by lightning or human-caused fires. As of May 04, 2016, authorities hadn’t determined the origin of the Fort McMurray wildfire. However, based on the wildfire data in Alberta, each year, more fires are caused by humans than by lightning. But based on their study, the total number of hectares consumed by human-induced fires is significantly fewer than lightning-caused fires.
As of May 09, 2016, wildfire is currently approximately 204,000 hectares and is anticipated to grow by Tuesday. A total of 29 wildfires are burning, with two out of control, one being held, 21 under control and five turned over to the responsible parties. Fire conditions remain extreme in the province. (From Alberta Government Announcements, Update 9: May 9 at 7:15pm)
It is burning!
Firefighters to the rescue!
Who are these men who are on the frontlines of Fort McMurray wildfire? According to the data of the government of Alberta, there are 1,547 firefighters; 121 helicopters; 194 pieces of heavy equipment; and 28 air tankers battling the fires. While everyone is running from the disaster, Firefighters are braving the odds and running towards it. Fire crews, police, emergency personnel and the military are all doing a great job. – well done – we are proud of you!
“To residents affected by the wildfires: We’ve lost about 2,400 structures, but we saved almost 25,000. It’s not yet safe to return. But it will be made safe. It will be a home you return to. All of the Alberta will have your back until that work is done.” Premier Rachel Notley said.
Residents of Fort McMurray get some rest in on cots at the Bold Centre in Lac La Biche, AB after being evacuated from fires that have taken over northern Alberta on Wednesday, May 04, 2016 . (Photograph by Chris Bolin)
All evacuees should register with the Red Cross – no matter where they are currently. This will help them to have access to the services they need, including access to emergency financial assistance. To register, go online at RedCross.ca or call 1-888-350-6070. Emergency Financial Assistance will be provided to people who have been displaced; it will be $1,250 per adult and $500 per dependent. There are 44,882 households have registered with the Red Cross. It is said to be more than 90,000 individuals.
Anyone who wants to help with a donation can contact the Canadian Red Cross or click help Fort McMurray for details and guidelines.
Government of Alberta