Canadian Press, May 3, 2016
FORT MCMURRAY, Alta. – Oilsands work camps were being pressed into service Tuesday to house evacuees as a raging wildfire emptied the city of Fort McMurray.
“We’ve made our work camp available to staff and their families who have been evacuated and need a place to stay,” said Cameron Yost of Shell Canada.
“We are looking at getting non-essential people out by aircraft,” said Yost, who added Shell’s camp could accommodate hundreds of evacuees.
Most oilsands projects are well north of the community, while the worst of the flames were on the city’s south side.
Shell’s camp is about 95 kilometres away and remained operating late Tuesday. Still, precautions were being taken.
Officials were also evacuating non-essential staff at Suncor’s base plant, at 30 kilometres away one of the closest facilities to the city, said spokesman Paul Newmarch. Evacuees were moving in to the plant’s work camps.
“We’re providing transportation and accommodation to the region to support the evacuation,” he said. “We’re making whatever we have available to support the evacuation.”