National Wildland Fire Situation Report

National Wildland Fire Situation Report

Archived reports

Current as of: September 12, 2018

Current active fires
Uncontrolled Controlled Modified Response
179 289 81
(to date)
10-yr avg
(to date)
% normal Prescribed U.S.
Number 6,826 1,515 450.6 46 47,391
2,250,047 681,919 330 2,029 2,900,433

Priority fires

British Columbia is no longer under a state of emergency as of September 7, however it is still listing 25 fires of note and has 20 evacuation alerts and orders in effect.

Interagency mobilization

The national preparedness levels are at 2 in Canada and 3 in the United States. British Columbia is at level 3, with all other agencies at level 2 or below. Crews are slowly being demobilized as the fire situation improves.

Weekly Synopsis

The 2018 fire season is closing with conditions suitable for mid-autumn in western Canada and summer in the east. A ridge that has lingered over the central Pacific Ocean for the past two weeks has arched north and east, allowing a cold Arctic air mass to descend slowly over western Canada. This is sending an upper trough that has lingered along the west coast further south to lie from northern California to Baffin Island. This pattern is bringing rain, snow, and temperatures 10-15 degrees below normal for much of British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. From a fire weather perspective, the cool temperatures and additional moisture will continue to reduce existing fire activity in western Canada. The upper flow swings quickly to the northeast over the eastern Prairies, leaving most of Manitoba and regions eastward in warm air. A few showers or thundershowers will continue to traipse across regions between Manitoba and northern Quebec.

Fire Restrictions:

In British Columbia, open burning is prohibited in most regions and there are travel restrictions and road closures associated with evacuation orders in many areas. Campfires are allowed in most regions with exceptions in some fire zones.

In Alberta, there are fire bans and restrictions in effect for most counties and towns in the south-east regions of the province, as well as the counties east of Red Deer. There are fire advisories in place for Jasper and Banff National Park, and for several areas near Edmonton and Calgary.

In Saskatchewan, there are restrictions on open fires in Saskatchewan Landing Provincial Park.

In Ontario, there are fire bans in effect for Egan Chutes, Gibson River, Hardy Lake, and Killarney Lakelands Parks. There are also fire restrictions in place new the Magpie River Terraces.

In the Yukon Territory burn permits are suspended in any area where the fire danger rating is moderate or above. This would be areas near Haines Junction and Braeburn.

Nova Scotia has burn restrictions or bans for in some municipalities in the western parts of the province.


The weather pattern changes little over the next few days. The cold air is cut off in the far southern regions of the western provinces and the intruding Arctic high pressure area is shunted to the east. Northern parts of western Canada will be chilly but mainly dry. Far southern regions in the west will remain in a slightly warmer but occasionally showery pattern and the eastern provinces will have a large temperature gradient, with cold air in the far northern regions and summery conditions in the far south. Bands of showers and thundershowers will move quickly across the east in the strong jet stream. While an occasional fire due to humans and lightning is still possible, mainly in Manitoba and east, the longer and cooler nights will help retain moisture and keep fire indexes low enough that activity will be minimal. Although warmer conditions will move into western Canada by the middle of the week of September 16, the remainder of the month appears to feature many days with below normal temperatures with occasional showers. The east remains in a warm and humid air mass with occasional showers or thundershowers, and by about the middle of the week of September 16, the remains of Hurricane Florence may combine with a mid-latitudes system and give plentiful rain. These events may effectively end the majority of the 2018 Canadian wildfire season, with only a few spotty fires or smoldering areas lingering into the autumn.

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