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Alberta’s Chuckegg Creek wildfire now being held

Firefighters work on wildfires in northern Alberta. Courtesy, Alberta government

More than two months after the Chuckegg Creek wildfire broke out in northwestern Alberta, officials say the fire is now being held.

Alberta wildfire officials updated the wildfire’s status on Thursday afternoon. “Being held” means that given the current and forecast weather conditions and resources, the wildfire is not anticipated to grow past expected boundaries.

READ MORE: Tough return for Paddle Prairie Métis Settlement after Alberta wildfire: ‘It hurts to see’

While the fire is being held, Alberta wildfire officials said parts of the interior boundaries may still grow and flare up with smoke and flames. A large firefighting presence will continue to work on the fire, as it is still considered an “active wildfire situation.”

The Chuckegg Creek wildfire forced the evacuation of residents in High Level, Alta. and surrounding communities in mid-May.

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READ MORE: High Level wildfire evacuees ‘very thankful’ to be returning home

As of 11 a.m. Friday, the wildfire was 350,134 hectares in size with a perimeter of about 635 kilometres.

Firefighters from across Canada, North America and South Africa have been involved in the firefighting efforts.

Watch below: After two weeks of being out of their homes, High Level residents returned on June 3

Click to play video: 'High Level residents begin to return home after wildfire evacuation' High Level residents begin to return home after wildfire evacuation
High Level residents begin to return home after wildfire evacuation – Jun 3, 2019

As of Friday, there were 20 active wildfires in the High Level area alone. Two of those were listed as out of control, nine were being held and nine were under control.

In total, there were 56 wildfires burning in Alberta as of 11 a.m. Friday. Of those, two were listed as out of control, 25 were being held and 23 were under control.

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As of July 20, wildfires in Alberta had burned about 817,256 hectares this season. That’s the largest area burned in a single season in 38 years, according to the most recent numbers.

READ MORE: This Alberta wildfire season has seen most hectares burned since 1981

In 1981, wildfires in Alberta burned 1,357,305 hectares.

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