ALBERTA

Alberta Wildfires: Ontario Firefighters Arrive To Lend A Helping Hand

05/22/2015 12:33 EDT | Updated 05/22/2016 05:59 EDT
USFWS/Southeast/Flickr
A wildfire at Florida Panther NWR. Photo by Josh O'Connor - USFWS.
EDMONTON - Firefighters from Ontario arrived in Alberta on Friday to help battle wildfires in the province.

Warm and dry conditions have increased the fire hazard to high or extreme in some areas.

Temperatures are expected in the high 20s in many parts of the province on the weekend and there's not much rain in the forecast.

Sustainable Resources said more crews are needed to battle blazes already burning or to respond to new ones.

Last year, 117 Ontario firefighters came to Alberta to help, and Alberta sent support to the Northwest Territories, British Columbia, Alaska and Idaho.

There were about two dozen fires burning in the province on Friday, but none were out of control.

Meanwhile, RCMP in Boyle, Alta., announced Friday they have determined a wildfire on the long weekend was sparked by careless campers and said they have launched an arson investigation.

The wildfire briefly threatened the hamlet of Caslan though an evacuation was not required.

RCMP said that at one point during the blaze, recreational vehicle operators in the area refused to get out of the area, which meant crews trying to battle the fire by air could not drop water to try to extinguish the flames.

"Unfortunately, we believe the reckless actions of a few threatened the property and weekend for many," said Cpl. John Spaans. "We hope that any witnesses to this occurrence will come forward and approach police to assist with the investigation."

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