May 9, 2023

Dunes West Wildfire Update #15 | 10:20 p.m. | Canadian Military Representatives Arrive in Grande Prairie to Assess Needs, Local Farmers Called to Disc Land

Help continues to arrive in Grande Prairie to support the response to the Dunes West Wildfire.

Earlier today, 4-person reconnaissance team from the Canadian Military landed in Grande Prairie to assess the Dunes West Wildfire and determine the need for wildland firefighting trained soldiers.

Dunes West Wildfire Status

The wildfire continues to burn out-of-control and updated mapping data shows the total area burned at an estimated 4700 hectares.

New data was collected as conditions permitted flythroughs of areas previously inaccessible due to conditions. Technical experts continue to refine and adjust detailed mapping of the fire boundary.

The site is active with embers, hotspots, and smouldering fuel such as tree roots, logs and shrubs. Hotspots are dangerous as they can quickly flare up and result in rapidly spreading live flames.

Drones with temperature mapping technology are being used to identify hotspots within the burned area so that they can be responded to by firefighting crews.

The perimeter around the fire is established, but not secure.

Weather conditions overnight are anticipated to aid in firefighting efforts. However, thunderstorms and high temperatures in the weather forecast are anticipated to cause hot, dry conditions as well as high-pressure systems that may cause aggressive fire behaviour and a challenging firefighting situation.

Residents are urged to be prepared for the situation in case the fire escalates and to stay tuned to Alberta Emergency Alerts.

The evacuation orders and alerts remain unchanged.

Residents can view the Alberta Wildfire Status Dashboard at

Local Farmers Called to Disc or Seed Land

Local farmers with land between Township Road 710 and 712, north of the evacuation area are called to disc and seed land to add an additional barrier and protection against the fire. Discing or seeding land helps slow the spread of wildfire by turning up soil and burying fuel sources.

Local farmers with questions may call the County of Grande Prairie’s Agricultural Fieldman, Sonja Raven, at 780-876-6936.

Temporary Access Permits

To date, 136 temporary access permits have been approved.

Evacuees who had a Temporary Access Permit denied can reapply. The denial would have been based on the current condition at the time of the application.

Approved permits are for one temporary access. Evacuees will need to reapply to have temporary access again.

There is currently a backlog of permit applications that are being processed as quickly as possible.

Supply and Volunteer Sign Up  

If you would like to offer resources such as equipment, supplies or volunteer services, please fill out the web form here    

When you submit the form, an automatic reply will be sent to confirm receipt of your message. 

Monetary Donations

Financial donations can be made to the Northwestern Alberta Emergency Response Fund through the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta.

Donations can be made online here or cash and cheques can be dropped off from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday or mailed to Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta at Centre 2000 (#200, 11330 Street, Grande Prairie, AB T8V 7X9).

Financial Assistance

There are now over 934 evacuees registered at the Bonnetts Energy Centre.

The Government of Alberta has announced emergency funding support for any Albertan who has been evacuated under mandatory order for seven consecutive days or more.

Eligible evacuees will receive $1,250 per adult and an additional $500 per dependent child under 18 years. Evacuees can apply for the payment at using an Account.

Funds can take up to 24 hours to flow into accounts and will be disbursed via e-transfer. Evacuees who are unable to receive an e-transfer or who cannot apply online can contact 310-4455 for assistance and to make alternate payment arrangements.

Area Residents Reminded to Be Prepared

The most effective way for residents and businesses outside of the evacuation area is to FireSmart your property.

Officials are requesting that homeowners, businesses, and industry review their properties and take some proactive steps to protect them in the event of a wildfire. Simple steps like yard maintenance can make a huge difference. Read more at FireSmart |

Learn more about wildfire preparedness at:

Call Centre and Reception Centre Updated Hours

The Call Centre and Reception Centre are both operating 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.

Any evacuees requiring support may attend the Bonnetts Energy Centre located at 10017 99 Avenue in Grande Prairie.

The Dunes West Wildfire Information Line is available at 1-825-606-5092.

Next Update

The next update will be available by 10 a.m. on Wednesday May 10, 2023.


Media Contact:

GPREP Information Officer