October 17, 2017 10:24 pm
Updated: October 17, 2017 11:04 pm

Raccoon clings to road sign as wildfire flares up in Cypress County, Alta.

Video submitted by Ashley Herrmann shows smoke billowing from a Cypress County wildfire burning in southeastern Alberta on Thursday afternoon.

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A raccoon was spotted clinging to a post at the intersection of Range Road 15 and Township Road 184 in Hilda, Alta. as a grass and wildfire flared up in Cypress County on Tuesday.

The photo was taken by Tanner Betcker, whose family owns the T Bar Cattle Co., based in Cypress County. He took it not far from where the fire is burning, between Township Road 180 and Township Road 190, as it headed toward Hilda.

The Betckers were checking on a property they own in Hilda when Tanner spotted the animal at 5:42 p.m.

A raccoon clung to a street sign as wildfire burned in Cypress County, Alta. on Oct. 17, 2017.

Tanner Betcker

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“We went out to see what needs to be done, to help fight the fire and to check our cows,” Tanner’s mother Lisa Betcker told Global News.

The fire had passed the area when the raccoon was spotted. Tanner took the photo, then the post fell over about 10 seconds later before the animal went into a culvert, she added.

The fire just missed the Betckers’ land, but a neighbour’s property was burnt, she said.

READ MORE: ‘Rapidly spreading’ wildfire sparks emergency alert, evacuations in southeastern Alberta’s hamlet of Hilda

The flames are burning amid strong winds.

Lisa said she didn’t see rain in the area all summer, though she said there was a snowstorm last Monday.

“My husband was just looking at the radar, there’s supposed to be a big rainstorm,” she said.

“There’s fires everywhere.”

Hilda residents have been told to leave the community and head for an emergency reception centre in the hamlet of Dunmore.

An Alberta Emergency Alert has been issued in Cypress County.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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