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Wood Buffalo officials to provide update on wildfire burning out of control near Fort McMurray

The MWF-017 wildfire burning southwest of Fort McMurray is the only wildfire classified as out of control in Alberta, provincials announced in an update on Thursday morning.

“MWF-017 didn’t grow overnight. It did move slightly to the northwest towards the Athabasca River, but it remains 5.5 kilometres from Fort McMurray limits and 4.5 from the highway,” Christie Tucker of Alberta Wildfire told reporters on Thursday. “The size has now been reassessed to 19,820 hectares, slightly smaller than it was assessed previously.”

Officials say fire behaviour is expected to be subdued on Thursday and in coming days with 20 to 80 millimetres of total precipitation in the forecast.

The fire forced the evacuation of four Fort McMurray neighbourhoods earlier this week.

Reception centres have been set up in Cold Lake, Lac La Biche, and Edmonton.

Residents have been told they should expect to be out of their homes until at least Tuesday.

Fort McMurray officials are expected to provide their own update on the situation at 10:30 a.m.

CTV News Edmonton will carry the update live online.

More to come…

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