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West Country wildfire risk remains high

Smoke from California wildfires not expected to hit central Alberta this week

The danger of wildfires in the Rocky Mountain House Forest Area remains high and visitors are urged to take care.

A fire advisory put in place Aug. 18 remains in effect.

Safe campfires are allowed and existing fire permits remain valid. Campfires should not be left unattended and the embers should be soaked and stirred to properly put them out.

New fire permits will only be issued on a case-by-case basis and no permits will be issued for fireworks or exploding targets, says Alberta Environment and Parks.

Off-highway vehicle users are urged to make sure there is no debris caught up in hot engine areas and to check that mufflers and spark arrestors are working properly.

The province said on Monday the Chungo Gap, which had been closed for a prescribed burn, has been reopened. Flame and smoke may still be visible in the area and people should be cautious.

If conditions permit, the area may be closed again on short notice to allow for more prescribed burning.

Meanwhile, it looks like central Alberta will be spared from the smoke blowing into Western Canada from California wildfires.

The forest and brush fires in California prompted an Environment and Climate Change Canada special air quality statement for Calgary and surrounding areas on Monday.

Conditions improved overnight and the smoke is expected to be blow through Alberta south of Calgary over the next two days. Medicine Hat is in the path of the plume of smoke, according to FireSmoke Canada projections.



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