Unfortunately, weather conditions in the near future do not support progress through an offensive attack today.
Alberta has one of the most robust Canadian Emergency Management models. Further, they have some of the highest trained and most experienced emergency managers in the country. The Incident Command System (ICS) is providing an interoperable Command and Control platform for joint operations between local first responders, RCMP, forest fire fighters, industry, evacuation centres, and likely the Canadian Armed Forces. Emergency Operations Centres, like the one activated at 200 Airport Road in Fort McMurray are linked through the technological solutions D-LAN, implemented after the Slave Lake Fire. The solution ensures organization of responses, ongoing situational awareness, and a common operating picture between response agencies on the ground and the levels of Emergency Operations Centres within the Province.
This incident is a reminder that continued diligence and funding are required at all levels to ensure we are prepared at all times. Cities like Fort McMurray are well prepared with proper risk assessments, evacuation plans, integrated exercises, and partnerships between the community, industry, modern technology, and responders. Each of us needs to look at our own communities and examine whether there is more work to be done and ensure that our response capability is commensurate with the level of risk.
The citizens of Fort McMurray are a tough and resilient group. They have fuelled our nation through their hard work and resourcefulness. Our Canadian model for Emergency Management and nationwide support structure will ensure the kind wishes of Canadians become actions aiding in your recovery.
Premier Rachel Notley, Fort McMurray Mayor Melissa Blake, and Scott Long from Alberta Emergency Management are to be commended for their ongoing leadership in these challenging times.
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