A firefighter battles flames as a large grass fire rages north of Swift Current along Highway 4 on May 1. The fire scorched 40-50 acres of land, threatening two farmyards and resulting in the evacuation of the Swift Current Mall, Wal-Mart and Canadian Tire as it burned closer to the city. Fans were turned off at Cypress Regional Hospital to prevent smoke from being drawn into the building and staff was prepared to evacuate if necessary. Up to 70 people were battling the blaze, including firefighters, RCMP, oilfield workers and neighbours. The flames were fanned by wind gusts of up to 62 km/h, but were under control within two-and-a-half hours. It was one of a few grass fires sparked in the Southwest on Thursday.