Fire officials battling a raging wildfire in Fort McMurray, Alta., are braced for another hot, dry and windy day, warning that the situation could be as bad or worse than the day before, when whole neighbourhoods burned down and the entire city was evacuated.
With strong winds likely to fuel the fire, thousands of residents have fled the city and up to 20,000 evacuees are expected to arrive in Edmonton.
One of them is Tamara Wolfe, whose home is in the Beacon Hill neighbourhood, one of the hardest-hit areas.
It took her family eight hours to reach the safety of an evacuation camp Tuesday night. By morning, they were headed for Edmonton.
Wolfe is certain her home on Beacon Hill Drive is gone. It was near a Super 8 Motel that burned down, and a Shell gas station that exploded.
“I’m in a state of shock,” she said Wednesday. “At one point I couldn’t cry if I wanted to. And the next minute, I’m bawling my eyes out.
“I had 40 years of stuff in that house, and family memories, that’s the hardest part. Things are replaceable, but not everything is replaceable.”