(Town of High Level photo)

Authorities warn out-of-control wildfire could cut northern Alberta town’s electricity

Alberta Transportation has closed Highway 35 south of High Level due to the fire

An out-of-control wildfire in northern Alberta has prompted authorities to close a highway and issue a warning that electricity may be cut to people in High Level.

The Town of High Level posted on Facebook that although the community is not in imminent danger, its fire department, as well as others, are preparing to protect Norbord, a short distance from the town.

The province says the blaze is burning about 25 kilometres southwest of High Level, and was expected to grow Sunday due to strong wind gusts from the southeast.

It says the fire covers over 25,000 hectares.

Alberta Transportation has closed Highway 35 south of High Level due to the fire, and Alberta Emergency Alert is warning there is a chance of an electrical disruptions.

The province issued a fire ban and restricted off-highway vehicle use for the area, as well as others in the province, late last week due to forecasts that called for little precipitation and strong winds.

“The High Level Forest Area has firefighters prepositioned in the area to respond to any new wildfire starts,” a news release from the province stated Sunday afternoon.

“Alberta Wildfire has heavy equipment, 55 firefighters, along with air support from helicopters and air tankers, working to contain the fire.”

Wildfires also burned out-of-control Sunday in the Slave Lake Forest Area, the Fort McMurray Forest Area, and in the Notikewin area near the community of Manning.

The province says there are no evacuation orders.

However, High Level advised its residents of the area to be prepared if the situation changes.

The Canadian Press

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