Permanent return to Slave Lake up to two weeks away: mayor
Mayor Karina Pillay-Kinnee is promising anxious evacuees that they will get twice-a-day updates on the rebuilding process and that members of the Slave Lake council will visit evacuation centres in Athabasca, Westlock and Edmonton.
A plan is being developed to let residents back into the scorched town for a quick check on their properties.
But Pillay-Kinnee warns that it may be two weeks before people are allowed to return to their homes.
Two highways in the Slave Lake area are open to traffic once again; however, there is still no access to services in the Town of Slave Lake itself.
The highways are:
The Old Smith Highway from Smith to Tollenaar Bridge. Supplies and services will be available only in Athabasca, Westlock or Smith.
Highway 754, west of Highway 88 to Marten Beach. Residents returning home are urged to access supplies and services in Wabasca, as Highway 88 to Slave Lake remains closed.
Latest evacuation update from province: In addition to the evacuation of Slave Lake, there are mandatory evacuation orders in place for Loon Lake, Red Earth Creek, and parts of the Municipal District of Lesser Slave River including Wagner, Widewater, Canyon Creek, Assineau, and the Poplar Lane Subdivision east of Slave Lake. The Municipal District of Northern Sunrise has issued evacuation advisories for Little Buffalo and Martin Lake.
To encourage donations to residents displaced by the Slave Lake wildfires, throughout the week Edmonton's Western Varieties Wholesale (10027 63 Ave.) is opening its doors to the public and giving 10% off wholesale prices. Ask for Desmond.
Minister of Finance Lloyd Snelgrove on help for Slave Lake fire victims: "We're looking at how to get funds to people who have been left with nothing. We're obviously looking at where we need to put our resources. We just have to get the right money to the right place and to the right people."
Slave Lake mayor Karina Pillay-Kinnee to visit evacuee reception centres today:
Athabasca Multiplex, 10711 - 104 Avenue - 2 p.m.
Westlock Community Hall, 2 University Drive - 4:30 p.m.
Edmonton Expo Centre, 7515 - 118 Avenue - 6:30 p.m.
@folclor The only pictures or video we have are posted on this live blog. Unfortunately we can't provide anything more in depth at this time.