City of Edmonton to close wildfire evacuee reception centre


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The City of Edmonton is closing its Emergency Reception Centre at 7 p.m. Monday following evacuation orders being lifted for the Northwest Territories towns of Hay River and Fort Smith.

The city opened the doors of the 7515 118 Ave. Expo Centre on Aug. 18 after a request from the Alberta Emergency Management Agency. Since then 7,540 evacuees and 1,314 pets were registered. The centre provided evacuees with temporary housing, food, clothing, animal care and health and mental supports.

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The city said over 4000 meals were served and hotel rooms were available for 1,760 families.

Andre Corbould, city manager, said in a press release that Edmonton will continue to be prepared to support future emergencies.

“I’m proud of our Emergency Support Response Team who have provided compassionate support to our neighbours from the Northwest Territories when they needed it most,” said Corbould. “We remain prepared to support future emergencies should the need arise.”

While evacuees stayed in Edmonton, the city provided free access to services such as transit and recreation centres which will also end at 7 p.m., on Monday.

Over the last few weeks Edmonton further supported Yellowknife and the Northwest Territories by deploying equipment up north with the help of Edmonton Fire Rescue Services.

Edmonton correctional facilities also accepted 85 inmates evacuated from the northern wildfires, the city did not say if those inmates will return up north.

-With files from Nicole Bergot