Wildfires threatening communities in the Northwest Territories were kept at bay Wednesday as politicians continued grappling with “astronomical” costs of fighting the blazes and how to eventually get people home. The N.W.T. government said in its wildfire update that fires encroaching on the capital of Yellowknife, along with the communities of Hay River and Fort Smith, remained a threat but had not moved closer. Fires were within 15 kilometres of Yellowknife, within eight kilometres of the hub city of Hay River and four kilometres from Fort Smith on the Alberta boundary. Crews continued to water bomb the fires and dig barriers down to the forest’s dirt floor to rob the fires of fuel. There were 237 active fires menacing the region. More than two-thirds of the 45,000-plus residents who call the N.W.T. home are living in evacuation centres and hotels as far away as Calgary and Winnipeg.