Canadian Wildland Fire Information System

National Wildland Fire Situation Report

Archived reports

Current as of: July 19, 2014

Current active fires
Uncontrolled Controlled Modified Response
54 142 233
2014
(to date)
10-yr avg
(to date)
% normal Prescribed U.S.
Number 2,806 4,198 67 51 30,298
Area
(ha)
1,281,568 1,462,842 88 7,461 479,824

Priority fires

BC - 5 fires (48,177+ha) - communities under evacuation orders and PC - 1 fire (7,000+ ha)

Interagency mobilization

The National Preparedness Level is 4 this week. Resource mobilization is above average and competition for national resources exists. International resources for fire management operations are being sought. The agency preparedness level for British Columbia and Alberta is 4; Northwest Territories is at level 3, while all other provinces and territories are a level 1 or 2. Agencies are sharing 461 personnel, 400 power pumps, 10 aircraft, and 67 km of hose along with a variety of other equipment. The United States is at preparedness level 3, with large fires burning in Arizona, California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.

Weekly Synopsis

There have been 130 new fires and 99,269 ha burned since July 16th. 65% of the new fires burning have been caused by lightning. The majority of the new fires occurred in British Columbia, Alberta, and the Northwest Territories (52%, 20%, and 15% respectively), while majority of the area burned was in British Columbia, Northwest Territories and Saskatchewan (44%, 17%, and 35% respectively). As much of the fire activity has taken place in western Canada, while central and eastern regions have remained relatively quiet, the seasonal fire occurrence and area burned both are below the 10-year average.

Fire danger is high in throughout much of Canada. Fire danger has decreased somewhat in British Columbia, although it remains high. Yukon, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba are at low to moderate fire danger. The Northwest Territories is at very high to extreme fire danger. Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritime Provinces have increased to high fire danger. Newfoundland has increased to high fire danger with large patches of extreme conditions.

In British Columbia, restrictions on open fires are in place for all fire zones. Campfire restrictions are also in place for the Coastal, Kamloops, and Cariboo fire zones. In the Yukon, as the danger rating is extreme in the District of Carmacks, burning permits may be suspended. In Alberta, fire bans are in place for Birchcliff, Black Diamond, Brazeau County, Jarvis Bay, Crowsnest Pass, Turner Valley, and Vulcan. Many other central and northeast Alberta regions have implemented fire advisories, and portions of the forest in southwest Alberta have been closed. In the Northwest Territories, smoke may be an issue in the North Slave Region, including Yellowknife. Smoke is causing poor visibility for travel along Highways 1, 3, and 4. In Quebec, industrial burning has been suspended in the Baie-Comeau region. In New Brunswick, category 1 burning has been suspended for all districts with the exceptions of Gloucester and Charlotte, where burning is permitted between 20:00 and 08:00. In Nova Scotia, burning is restricted to the hours of 19:00 and 08:00 for all counties except for Antigonish, Guysborough, Inverness, and Pictou where no burning is permitted. An open fire ban has been issued for the Island of Newfoundland.

Prognosis

The upper flow roughly oriented into a southwest to northeast direction across the country on Sunday (July 20), maintaining cool air in the west and warming the east. A weak upper low zipping along the 49th parallel is giving showers to southern Alberta and Saskatchewan. This system strengthens as it approaches the Great Lakes, creating an area of showers and thundershowers in central Ontario on Tuesday (July 22) and central Quebec on Wednesday (July 23). Behind this system, a low pressure area drops down the British Columbia coast, bypassing the Northwest Territories, sending more moisture into coastal British Columbia, and pumping up a ridge between eastern British Columbia and western Ontario. The coastal storm moves inland late on Wednesday (July 23), providing moisture to the Gulf islands and southern British Columbia. By Thursday (July 24), this storm approaches Alberta, with current model runs indicating an elongated surface trough developing in the lee of the Rockies and providing plenty of shower and thundershower activity through most of Alberta. At the same time, instability creeps into the Northwest Territories, allowing thundershower development once again.

Nationally, fire danger is expected to remain high. Fire danger in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec will likely remain elevated. The Prairie Provinces are predicted to be at moderate fire danger. Fire danger in Atlantic Canada is expected to remain high. The area to watch is the Northwest Territories, where the very high to extreme fire danger will likely persist. National resources may not be sufficient to manage the anticipated fire activity.

Current graphs

Note: For provinces, PC = Parks Canada