TORONTO， May 5 (Xinhua) -- The wildfire in western Canada has ballooned to 85，000 hectares in Fort McMurray overnight and is now billowing across a wide front south of the city， a senior official said Thursday.
The fire， which broke out early this week， has forced a massive evacuation， said Alberta Premier Rachel Notley one day after the province declared a state of emergency.
Supercharged by winds of up to 70 kmh， the Fort McMurray wildfire has grown 8 times larger Wednesday night and is expected to continue to burn out of control Thursday as more than 1，110 firefighters， 145 helicopters and 22 air tankers are fighting to protect homes and critical infrastructure across the oil sands gateway.
No firm estimates are yet available on number of structures that burned overnight but officials said Wednesday that at least 1，600 homes and buildings have been destroyed as over 88，000 residents were evacuated from Fort McMurray. Up to 90 percent of structures were burnt down in some outskirts neighborhoods.
On Wednesday afternoon， Alberta declared a province-wide state of emergency to provide full support and better coordinate resources.
Officials said one major task on Thursday will be to re-evacuate up to 25，000 people now sheltering in oil sands work camps north of the city. The province hopes to transport many of those people， who fled Fort McMurray two days ago， by aircraft to Edmonton， the provincial capital and the closest major city 435 km to the south.
Fire officials said a total of 47 wildfires are burning across the province with seven considered out of control. Amazingly， as of Thursday morning， there have been no serious injuries or deaths yet reported.
Three more communities including an evacuation center were put under evacuation orders late Wednesday as the unstoppable fire pushed further south away from Fort McMurray. Firefighters said they need help from cooler wetter weather to contain fire.
The local airport， which has already been shut down to all commercial flights， suffered minor damages but will remain open to emergency services. Anxious and exhausted people boarded buses for the long trip down Highway 63.
Fire crews on the ground expect to receive reinforcements soon from other parts of Canada. Ontario will send 100 fighters Friday and Quebec has dispatched four air tankers.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday morning that the federal government will match all individual charitable donations to Red Cross relief efforts for Fort McMurray. Alberta has also pledged to match donations to the Red Cross.
Insurance companies are setting up temporary claims hubs and sending additional staff to Alberta as wildfires in Fort McMurray destroyed property in what could become one of the costliest natural disasters in Canadian history.
The damage could reach 9 billion Canadian dollars (about 7 billion U.S. dollars) for insurers if it gets to the point that the town has to be rebuilt， an analyst at Bank of Montreal said Thursday.
Officials were still investigating the cause of the latest fire， being it lightning strike or human cause， but meteorologist said the wildfire has a clear link to climate change.
Canada's northern forests have been burning more frequently over recent decades as temperatures there are rising at twice the rate of the global average. A 2013 analysis showed that the boreal forests of Alaska and northern Canada are now burning at a rate unseen in at least the past 10，000 years.
The extreme weather of recent months is also closely linked with the ongoing record-setting El Nino conditions in the Pacific Ocean， which tends to bring a warmer and drier winter to this part of Canada.
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