Growing forested communities are creating a new and shared reality in Alberta – the wildland-urban interface with a new
level of wildfire risk.
Periodically, wildfire reviews are conducted with the aim of ensuring Alberta’s wildfire management program is progressive
and responsive. These reviews provide government with recommendations to:
- Evolve and adapt to opportunities, threats and realities
- Assess program performance
- Identify areas for improvement
2011 Flat Top Complex – Three wildfires in the Slave Lake area
The Flat Top Complex report assesses provincial response to the wildfires that entered the Town of Slave Lake and nearby
communities of Canyon Creek, Poplar Estates, and Widewater in May 2011:
Background: Flat Top Complex
- From May 11 to 15, 2011, the province fought 52 wildfires occurring in the Lesser Slave Area along with 137 other wildfires
occurring in other Alberta regions. All provincial wildfires occurring during that period were human caused.
- On May 15, 2011, spurred by extreme wind conditions, three wildfires known collectively as the "Flat Top Complex" entered
the Town of Slave Lake and surrounding municipal area, with two of the wildfires causing widespread community damage and
forcing the evacuation of almost 15,000 residents.
- By the time the wildfires were extinguished, nearly 22,000 hectares in the Lesser Slave Area were burned.
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Posted: May 18, 2012