Canada evacuates maximum-security prison due to Quebec wildfires

(Reuters) - Canadian officials have evacuated 225 inmates from a maximum-security prison in Quebec due to intensifying forest fires in the area, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) said on Sunday.

An evacuation order for the Port-Cartier Institution was issued on Friday and inmates were moved to other secure federal correctional facilities, without giving details.

"To carry out the evacuation, we put measures in place, together with our partners, to maintain the safety and security of our staff, the public, and the offenders in our care and custody," the CSC said in a news release.

In an update on Friday, Quebec's wildfire agency SOPFEU said lightning sparked seven fires north of Port-Cartier and two were out of control.

Across Canada the wildfire season has so far been much less destructive than the record-breaking 2023 season in which more than 15 million hectares burned. However the federal government is forecasting another hotter-than-average summer ahead.

The CSC said the emergency situation continues to evolve and it was working on when it would be possible to reopen the maximum-security institution.

(Reporting by Nia Williams in British Columbia; Editing by Aurora Ellis)