Although Fort McMurray is the site of Canada’s most prominent oil industry, it has a reputation for something else: excessive living. Like any other boom town in history, it is full of debauchery. Oil workers with pockets stuffed full of money pour into town during their shift changes to get rowdy and purge their systems of revelries before their next set of work days. This has earned Fort McMurray the reputation of being a party town with a dark underside of crime and drug trade.
The matter of substance abuse in Fort McMurray is known to be significant. This is typical of any boom town. A boom town’s prosperity always exceeds its size and its accommodations. Fort McMurray is a small town in an unremarkable location. It does not offer any of the luxuries, recreation or entertainment of a big city. Yet its residents are the wealthiest in all of Canada. One can imagine why that has created a culture of substance abuse within Fort McMurray. The drug trade in Fort Mac is a huge operation, supplying the wealthy oil workers with exotic illegal substances to entertain themselves with. Drugs and alcohol are some of the primary means of entertainment for Fort McMurray residents. Oil worker are frequently required to check in to an Alberta alcohol detox or drug rehab.
The crime rate in Fort McMurray is also shockingly high. Much of it is tied to the drug trade, as there are a number of competing gangs in town. The Hell’s Angels are a presence there, as well as several other prominent gangs. There are people from all over the world living and working in Fort McMurray for the high wages, which leads to culture clashes and a foreign crime presence. Violent crime is ever on the rise in Fort McMurray, and the clashes with the RCMP that occur are volatile. Some people criticize Fort McMurray harshly, calling it a cesspool of debauchery, crime and immorality. Fort McMurray has a good side too, with prospering families and tight communities, but the crime and substance abuse problems are concerning.