11 jaw-dropping videos from the Fort McMurray wildfire

Astonishing footage from the flame-ravaged communities in and around Fort McMurray, Alta.

Astonishing footage from the flame-ravaged communities in and around Fort McMurray, Alta.

Taken in the afternoon on Tuesday, the fire threatens the city of Fort McMurray. 1:21

More than 24 hours after a mandatory evacuation order was issued for the city of Fort McMurray, Alta., emergency responders are still attempting to gain control of the wildfire responsible for displacing tens of thousands of residents.

At least 1,600 homes had been destroyed as of Wednesday night, and despite the efforts of approximately 250 firefighters, 12 helicopters and 17 air tankers, a province-wide state of emergency remains in effect.

But numbers alone can't illustrate the devastating impact of this blaze upon those who've been forced to flee it.

Here are just 11 of many unforgettable videos shared by evacuees, emergency responders and journalists in Fort McMurray since Tuesday – many of them shot as wildfires raged dangerously close to those filming the chaos.

"Oh my god Steve, our house is gonna burn down," sobs Fort McMurray resident Erica Decker in this heart-breaking video while fleeing the Beacon Hill neighbourhood in a car with her husband and child:

CBC's Briar Stewart shot this clip of fire approaching a Fort McMurray highway on Tuesday while residents rushed to get out of the city. According to Stewart, popping sounds "like explosions" could be heard from where she stood.

Raw video captured by Briar Stewart of the fire next to the highway in Fort McMurray 0:18

As smoke moved in on the Fort McMurray International Airport Wednesday, NAV Canada's webcam continued to capture hourly images of its surrounding area. Here's a timelapse showing what happened between 8:41 a.m. and 6:41 p.m., local time:

"We've had a devastating day," Fort McMurray fire chief Darby Allen told CBC News on Tuesday. "It's been the worst day of my career."

'We've had a devastating day,' Chief Darby Allen told CBC's Briar Stewart. 'It's been the worst day of my career' 1:13

Here's an aerial view of Fort McMurray, shot Wednesday from a plane flying at about 3,400 metres – just 15 kilometres away from the fire.

Footage shot from a plane 15 kilometres away from the fire flying at about 3,400 metres 2:55

Lawyer Jordan Stuffco captured this terrifying scene from his car as he left the wildfire-ravaged city for Edmonton on Tuesday afternoon. "You could see homes being engulfed in flames," he later told CBC News. "It truly was heart-wrenching." 

These devastating images are from the Beacon Hill neighbourhood, where roughly 80 per cent of homes have been destroyed by wildfire so far: 

Roughly 80 per cent of homes in the Beacon Hill neighbourhood destroyed by wildfire 1:01

The woman who provided this video to CBC News says she rode for 10 hours on a motorcycle as she and her husband fled the massive wildfire in Fort McMurray:

A former Winnipegger says she rode 10 hours on a motorcycle as she and her husband fled the massive wildfire in Fort McMurray, Alta. 0:56

Volunteer firefighter Chad Sartison shared footage from the perspective of a colleague working to quell the blaze. "Video from one of my #firefighters taken am... he fought all night non stop," Sartison wrote. "Said he ate a lot of bad smoke."

This Fort McMurray couple spoke to CBC News after losing their home and possessions in the wildfire – as it still raged directly behind them:

Fort McMurray couple loses home and possessions in the wildfire. 0:34


Visit our Fort McMurray wildfire YouTube playlist for more videos of the raging blaze, the damage its caused, and the resilience it's inspired. You can also view the complete video collection in the player below:

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