The Cree community of Eastmain, Que., is being partly evacuated Friday due to heavy smoke from a nearby forest fire.
A total of 261 people are being moved by plane to Val d’Or. Of the evacuees, 74 are pregnant women, children, elders, or people with heart trouble, other illnesses and respiratory problems. The remainder are escorts and caregivers.
The evacuees are being looked after in Val d'Or by the Red Cross, and placed in hotels.
The fire is 16 kilometres from Eastmain, on the other side of the Eastmain River. There is currently no risk of fire in the community.
Civil security authorities expect it will be at least Monday before the evacuees can return home.
The Eastmain health centre is closed except for emergencies and prescription refills.
Hydro Quebec may have to interrupt power to the community off and on over the next few days, as it moves to protect power lines from fire.