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Technical firefighters on the way to Fort McMurray

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The fire near Fort McMurray is being held at over 500 thousand hectares and the province plans to bring it technical firefighters next week. There is 500 coming in to help next week and the same amount the week after that. Alberta Wildfire Manager Chad Morrison says it is now a lot safer for the firefighters to clean up all the hot spots near the oilsands facilities.

“We continue to have firefighters deployed closely around the oil sands operations and industrial camps there. The fire will take some time to put out in that perspective but we feel in the current conditions and the number of firefighters we have there working, at this time there is no immediate threat”

The Suncor and Syncrude sites remain on mandatory evacuation but officials are regularly assessing the area. The fire still stretches into Saskatchewan 700 hectares while both provinces continue to work together to bring the blaze down.

There is work being done to bring utilities back into the city. ATCO gas is starting to work on getting gas back to the area after explosions halted work earlier in the week.

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There are still plans to move residents back into Fort McMurray on conditional terms by June 1st. The province is asking anyone that plans to return to bring potable water.

Chief Medical Officer of Health with Alberta Health Services Dr. Karen Grimsrud says they are working on finding a number on the air quality scale that would be safe enough for people to return to the city.

Police are investigating numerous reports of people double dipping into the funds provided by the government and Red Cross. There has also been reports of people posing as Fort McMurray evacuees to receive money as well.

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