Newspaper article The Canadian Press


Newspaper article The Canadian Press


Article excerpt

TORONTO - (FIXES title for David Phillips in para 3)


The "beast" of a wildfire that charred Fort McMurray, Alberta was selected as Canada's top weather story of the year in an annual list compiled by the country's top meteorologists.

The wildfire forced nearly 90-thousand people to flee the city and reduced thousands of homes to ash in early May.

Environment Canada's chief climatologist, David Phillips says a dry forest floor acted as kindling for the fire, and high winds blew the flames over highways and rivers in what he says was an "almost biblical" disaster.

The wildfire, nicknamed "the beast" for its unpredictability, is the costliest insured natural disaster in Canadian history, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, with an estimated 3.77-billion dollars in claims as of last month. …

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