Journalists and photographers have been allowed into the Canadian city of Fort McMurray for the first time since a raging wildfire swept through it. Their photos show scenes of utter devastation, with homes levelled to the ground and street after street reduced to nothing more than blackened foundations. Burnt-out vehicles sit on melted tyres, with streams of once-molten metal snaking out from them.

Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A man photographs burned out homes in the Abasand neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
The charred remains of a barbecue are pictured in the Beacon Hill neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A burned stove is pictured amongst the remains of a home in the Abasand neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A woman takes photos of the burned remains of a house in the Abasand neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A charred vehicle and home are pictured in the Beacon Hill neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Crews begin to work on the burned out remains of the Waterways neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
The burnt-out shell of a home is seen in the Abasands neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayJonathan Hayward/AFP
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Homes that survived the blaze are seen behind the remains of others that were destroyed by fire in the Abasands neighbourhood of Fort McMurrayJonathan Hayward/AFP
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A charred bicycle is seen among the ashes of a residential neighbourhoodScott Olson/Getty Images
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
The burnt-out shell of a home contains the charred remains of a family's possessions
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A partly-melted children's swing set in seen next to the charred remains of a homeScott Olson/Getty Images

The Beacon Hill, Waterways and Abasand neighbourhoods were particularly hard hit. But the fire blazed a capricious trail. Swathes of homes were burned to the ground, while other nearby areas were unscathed.

The wider picture was more optimistic. Fire chief Darby Allen said 85% of the city remains intact, including the downtown district. Alberta premier Rachel Notley said about 2,400 homes and buildings were destroyed in the city, but firefighters managed to save 25,000 others, including the hospital, municipal buildings and every functioning school.

Canada: Aerial footage captures burning railway bridge in AlbertaIBTimes UK

The wildfire forced the evacuation of the entire city. Some 88,000 residents fled on the one highway that leads into the remote community in northern Alberta. No deaths or injuries have been reported from the fire itself. But Notley said two evacuees died in a traffic accident during the evacuation.

Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Flames engulf trees along a highway near Fort McMurrayCole Burston/AFP
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A Canadian Joint Operations Command aerial photo taken on 4 May shows wildfires near neighbourhoods in Fort McMurrayCourtesy MCPL Van Putten/CF Operations/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
An aerial view of Highway 63 south of Fort McMurray shows smoke from the wildfiresMCPL Van Putten/Canadian Armed Forces/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A helicopter is dimly seen through heavy smoke near a Royal Canadian Mounted Police vehicle as a large wildfire burns in and around Fort McMurrayRCMP/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Smoke and flames tower over a car on the highway near Fort McMurrayMark Blinch/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Stills captured from surveillance video footage shows wildfire progressively engulfing the home of James O'Reilly in Fort McMurray on 6 MayJames O'Reilly/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A firefighting helicopter is dwarfed by towering clouds of smoke from wildfires in the Fort McMurray areaCourtesy Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
People wait at a roadblock as smoke rises from wildfires near Fort McMurrayChris Wattie/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Birds fly past huge clouds of smoke billowing from the Fort McMurray wildfiresMark Blinch/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
A Mountie surveys the damage on a street in Fort McMurrayCourtesy Alberta RCMP/Reuters
Canada wildfire Fort McMurray
Drivers wait outside Fort McMurray for clearance to take firefighting supplies into townScott Olson/Getty Images

The fire broke out southwest of the city on Sunday 1 May and appeared to be on its way to being neutralised by the Tuesday, but it overwhelmed firefighters when winds shifted quickly and drastically in the mid-afternoon to the southwest of the city. Fire officials said the blaze was still large, growing and dangerous. But they noted cooler weather had slowed the fire's spread and would help in the coming days. High temperatures and winds accelerated the blaze last week.