The town and RM of Biggar have declared a state of emergency due to a wildfire burning southwest of the community.

The RCMP advised people to avoid the area because of a fire burning “out of control” on Monday night.

An advisory issued by SaskAlert says people should avoid Highway 51, Triumph Road and the surrounding areas until further notice.

The area is dealing with smoke and poor air quality from the fire.

Officials say residents in Biggar have not yet been advised to evacuate but have been told to be prepared to leave the town if necessary.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority has evacuated the Biggar Health Centre, including the hospital and long-term care facility, as a precaution. Patients have moved to beds in Rosetown and Saskatoon.

Anyone in the area is asked to follow instructions from emergency crews.

A shelter has been set up at the Biggar community hall for people with respiratory issues.

With files from