North­west Re­gion Hot sum­mer weather in­creases for­est fire hazard

Kenora Daily Miner and News - - LOCAL NEWS -

The re­turn of hot sum­mer weather with tem­per­a­tures fore­cast in the 30 C range to­day, Fri­day July 13 and go­ing into the week­end will likely re­sult in the re­turn of a high to ex­treme for­est fire hazard rat­ing for much of the North­west re­gion.

As of Wed­nes­day, July 11, the fire hazard ranged from low to mod­er­ate in the south­ern por­tion of the re­gion to high across the north shore and ex­treme in the far north ar­eas of Red Lake, Sioux Lookout and Nip­igon dis­tricts.

A weather sys­tem pass­ing through the Kenora area overnight Tues­day brought some rain and cooler tem­per­a­tures be­fore dis­si­pat­ing by early Wed­nes­day after­noon.

At that time, fire in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cers at Avi­a­tion and For­est Fire Emer­gency Ser­vices in Dry­den re­ported 53 ac­tive fires in the North­west re­gion of which five were des­ig­nated as out of con­trol and the re­main­ing 48 as ei­ther un­der con­trol, be­ing held or un­der ob­ser­va­tion.

Fires in the far north near Nib­i­namik (Sum­mer Beaver) con­tinue to grow. Crews on Nip­igon Fire #29 have been work­ing the western flank of the 1,800 hectare fire – 10 kilo­me­tres south of the remote First Na­tion – in an ef­fort to limit the fire’s spread in the di­rec­tion of the com­mu­nity.

Nearby to the northeast, the much larger Nip­igon Fire #30 has ex­panded to over 10,000 hectares. Aerial ig­ni­tion will be used on both Nip­igon Fires #29 and #30 to bring the fires to nat­u­ral bound­aries.

Ear­lier this week, light­ning ac­tiv­ity gave rise to four new for­est fires, all in the Sioux Lookout District of the North­west Re­gion by the after­noon of July 10:

• Sioux Lookout Fire #58 is

part of a clus­ter of small light­ning fires south of Windigo Lake. The fire is un­der ob­ser­va­tion at three hectares in size;

• Sioux Lookout Fire #59,

a light­ning caused fire on an is­land on Miniss Lake, within the bound­aries of St. Raphael Pro­vin­cial Park.

Sioux Lookout Fire 60 is lo­cated near the Flindt River just west of the Wabakimi Pro­vin­cial Park bound­ary. At 0.3 hectares it is cur­rently not un­der con­trol.

• Sioux Lookout Fire #61 is lo­cated 8.5 kilo­me­tres south of the remote First Na­tion Com­mu­nity of Wun­num­min Lake. An air­tanker and he­li­copter were de­ployed to as­sist FireRangers on the ground to limit the spread of the one hectare fire.

AFFES per­son­nel from the North­west, in­clud­ing 30 (fourper­son) FireRanger crews, 28 over­head staff, one lo­gis­tics team, nine CL-415 wa­ter­bombers and two heavy he­li­copters have joined a large in­ter-pro­vin­cial con­tin­gent of staff, air­craft and equip­ment help­ing the Northeast Re­gion cope with a chal­leng­ing for­est fire sit­u­a­tion.

AFFES PHOTO

A flight of AT-802 Fire Boss air­craft from Al­berta make a pit stop at Dry­den Fire Man­age­ment Head­quar­ters, July 10, en­route to as­sist the Northeast Re­gion with a chal­leng­ing for­est fire sit­u­a­tion.

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