The Americas

Alberta wildfires damage estimated to cost $2.76 billion

Canada's national insurance bureau says insured damage caused by raging wildfires that burned for nearly two months in the country's oil sands region has totaled $2.76 billion (CA$3.58 billion). That's the most expensive disaster for insurers in the country's history.

The fires that started on May 3 forced the evacuation of almost 90,000 residents from Fort McMurray, Alberta. Flames destroyed about 2,400 homes and other buildings. The fire's status was only downgraded this past Monday as under control.

People have since been allowed back into their homes, but it took nearly two months before the state of emergency was lifted.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada says its estimate was based on data collected by Catastrophe Indices and Quantification Inc., a company that compiles insured loss amounts based on surveys with insurers.