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Syncrude shuts down oilsands plant north of Fort McMurray as smoke moves in

Click to play video 'Fort McMurray evacuees continue to arrive at Edmonton Expo Centre' Fort McMurray evacuees continue to arrive at Edmonton Expo Centre
WATCH ABOVE: Northlands CEO Tim Reid provided an update Saturday morning on the situation at the Expo Evacuation Centre in Edmonton.

EDMONTON – Syncrude shutdown operations at its Mildred Lake site Saturday morning after smoke moved into the area.

The company tweeted it made the decision to ensure the safety of workers and the integrity of its operations.

The CEO of Northlands told Global News workers were making their way to the reception centre in Edmonton.

“We do know that there is a convoy of buses leaving Syncrude right now,” Tim Reid said Saturday morning.

Syncrude said despite the smoke there was no imminent threat of fire to the site.

Watch below: Coverage of the Fort McMurray wildfire and the stories of those who fled it.

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“It’s Syncrude’s intention to have all units suspended and all personnel removed from Mildred Lake this weekend,” a company release said.

“We have sufficient busing and air capacity to execute this in a timely manner. The evacuation of personnel began early Saturday morning.”

The site will start up again when there is no risk to personnel or operations, the company said.

Syncrude added the jobs of its 4,800 employees are secure despite the shutdown.

Mildred Lake is located about 40 kilometres north of Fort McMurray.

Watch below: Aerial footage shows the devastation in Fort McMurray’s Abasand and Beacon Hill neighbourhoods

Click to play video 'Fort McMurray wildfire: Aerial footage of the destruction in Abasand and Beacon Hill' Fort McMurray wildfire: Aerial footage of the destruction in Abasand and Beacon Hill
Fort McMurray wildfire: Aerial footage of the destruction in Abasand and Beacon Hill

 

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