Thick plumes of smoke engulfed homes, forcing residents of Halifax City to evacuate.Keystone
On Monday, wildfires were burning in eight of the thirteen provinces and territories in the country led by Justin Trudeaux.
More than 16,000 people have been forced to evacuate their homes in Nova Scotia, eastern Canada, after one of the many fires ravaging the country threatened Halifax, authorities said Monday. The fire is still out of control.
However, the fire has not progressed since a state of emergency was declared on Sunday evening, leaving residents of the suburbs on the alert, ready to evacuate at any time.
“We really thought we were going to die,” said Marian and Peter Gillespie, a couple who found themselves caught in the flames, with “ashes and sparks falling on the car” as they fled the fire.
“It was surreal to drive in the middle of burning vehicles and homes”
A volunteer firefighter, tears in his eyes
On the television channels, we can see large plumes of smoke and several houses and vehicles reduced to ashes by the flames, but no injuries are to be deplored.
No rain in sight
Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston described a “stressed” province, while Halifax Mayor Mike Savage spoke of an “unprecedented” fire:
“We have not widened the perimeter [de la zone d’évacuation, ndlr] since yesterday, which gives hope that the situation may have stabilized.
Although the winds that fanned the flames changed direction on Monday, pushing the wildfire back in the direction it came from, that was not enough to ward off the danger, authorities said. Only rain could allow them to control the fire, they said, but no precipitation is expected during the week.
In recent years, western Canada has been hit repeatedly by extreme weather events, the intensity and frequency of which have increased due to global warming. (ats/jch)
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