Our son was born in Fort Mac, and we lived and worked there for 7 years. We have many close friends spread out all over the province now…many in the "at-risk zone".
We spent the night on Facebook trying to coordinate places to stay for folks that were en-route to Edmonton, or connecting random friends with eachother as they fled north to set up a tent in a field. It has been an emotional and terrifying 24 hours.
The oil-refineries and upgraders have reduced their production rates, and non-essential personnel have been sent away. Those essential folks are sleeping in their offices so that families can be given space in the work-camps. Fly-outs are being provided from the North Air-strip (controlled by Shell).
Consider donating, folks have lost everything, and it sounds like the Alberta government will be matching donations.
Please refrain from getting on your high-horse about how the oilsands are polluters…this is one of the pillars of the Canadian economy, and the energy is actually sourced and refined in a manner that abides by all regulations from the government. We are Canadians, and the entire country needs to set up and help our fellow countrymen/women.