Albertans flock to advance polls in record numbers

WATCH ABOVE: Advance poll numbers are out and they show a record turnout from voters across Alberta. Elections Alberta saw a 31 per cent increase in advance poll voters compared to the previous election. Shallima Maharaj has the details.

EDMONTON – The anticipation of a close election between three parties appears to have motivated Albertans to head to advance polls in record numbers.

Elections Alberta indicates more Albertans cast a ballot in the advance polls than ever, with 235,410 placing a vote.

READ MORE: Alberta election 2015: Platform planks of the 4 main parties

The turnout is a 30 per cent increase over the previous election, when 179,820 Albertans cast a ballot in the advance polls.

The 2015 total also dwarfs the advance polls turnout in other recent elections:

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  • 2008 – 64,332
  • 2004 – 44,807
  • 2001 – 45,766
  • 1997 – 34,284
  • 1993 – 37,119

All recent polls have indicated the NDP has a lead over the PCs and Wildrose who are in a close race for second.

READ MORE: NDP poised to win Alberta election according to poll

An Ipsos poll conducted for Global News and Corus Entertainment and released last week showed 37 per cent of respondents said if an election were held tomorrow, they would be most likely to support the NDP. The Wildrose and Progressive Conservatives were neck and neck, sitting with 26 per cent and 24 per cent respectively.

The poll suggests the Liberals would receive nine per cent of the vote, while the Alberta Party would receive just three per cent of the vote.