CALGARY, Alberta, May 12 (UPI) — More facilities were returning to normal in the Fort McMurray area of Alberta, with Enbridge the latest to return some infrastructure to regular service.
Enbridge crews confirmed two of its facilities in Fort McMurray were unaffected by fires that have blazed through the area for nearly two weeks. A pipeline from its Cheecham terminal was returned to service late Wednesday.
“We continue to work collaboratively with our regulators, customers, provincial and local governments, and over the coming days expect to restore additional service as we are safely able to do so,” the company said in a statement.
As early as Tuesday, all of Enbridge pipeline from Cheecham were either isolated or shut down completely. Shell Canada started ferrying staff back to the Fort McMurray area on Monday to resume oil sands mining operations.
The provincial government confirmed early this week that oil sands operations in Alberta were spared by the wildfires. Alberta is home to some of the largest oil deposits outside the Middle East and Canada is the No. 1 oil exporter to the United States.
The situation remains relatively static, with no change in the size of the fires in Fort McMurray and little to no migration east toward the provincial border with Saskatchewan.
“Fire conditions remain extreme in the province,” Alberta’s government said.
Fort McMurray and the surrounding areas remain under mandatory evacuation orders.
At its peak, an estimated 1 million barrels per day worth of Canadian oil production was impacted by fires that erupted in early May.