01/04/2018 11:45 EST | Updated 01/05/2018 16:01 EST

Alberta cancels alert over natural gas shortage in northern Mackenzie County

EDMONTON — The Alberta Emergency Management Agency has cancelled the alert it issued on Friday about a natural gas shortage affecting people in the north who were enduring an extreme cold snap.

The province says the natural gas system that feeds Mackenzie County has recovered.

The county had issued a local state of emergency and had urged its 12,000 residents to conserve gas as temperatures plunged below - 40 C.

The county issued a notice Thursday saying people and businesses can resume normal operations and it is closing its emergency operations centre.

During the gas shortage the hospital in Fort Vermilion switched over to diesel for heat and a long-term care home in La Crete switched to propane.

County officials say the gas shortage and outages point to the need for another pipeline to supply the region with natural gas.