US & Canada

North Canada residents airlifted away from wildfires

Map of Saskatchewan

Canadian military planes and helicopters have airlifted nearly all the residents of two communities in the Saskatchewan province to safety, after wildfires moved into the region.

The last of the area's more than 1,000 residents were being moved out of Wollaston Lake and Hatchet Lake First Nation early on Thursday morning.

Several individuals will remain in the area to help with emergency efforts.

The five sq km blaze continues to rage just south of the communities.

The airlift started at about 2145 local time (0345 GMT) on Wednesday, after three Hercules planes and four Griffon helicopters touched down near the two northern communities, which are currently only accessible by air.

"At this particular time the evacuation is either complete or near complete," Duane McKay, provincial commissioner of fire safety and emergency management, told The Canadian Press.

The Public Health Agency of Canada has supplied beds, blankets and other essentials for the evacuated residents, who were taken to the nearby town of Points North, a statement released by the Canadian government said.

No injuries have been reported from the wildfires, which were first reported on Monday.