Wildfire that forced thousands out of Fort McMurray, Alta., officially under control

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A firefighter monitors a pump in a river bed used for wildfire sprinklers in the evacuated neighbourhood of Grayling Terrace in Fort McMurray, Alta., Thursday, May 16, 2024. The wildfire that forced thousands from their homes in Fort McMurray earlier this month is now under control. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

A wildfire that forced thousands from their homes in Fort McMurray earlier this month is now under control.

Alberta Wildlife officials say the blaze remains less than six kilometres from the community and is about 190 square kilometres in size.

About 6,600 residents in four neighbourhoods were ordered out for several days as fierce winds whipped flames close to the community.

The rest of those in the city of 68,000 were put on notice that they may have to leave on short notice.

The fire was detected three weeks earlier and the cause remains under investigation.

For some, the blaze brought back difficult memories of 2016, when wildfires forced a mass evacuation of the city and burned more than 2,000 homes.