Forest Fire Situation Update Northwest Region July 03, 2019

The Forest Fire Hazard heading into the weekend is high in Northern Ontario
The Forest Fire Hazard is high in Northern Ontario

THUNDER BAY – The WildFire situation in Northwestern Ontario is ramping up. There are evacuations underway in Keewaywin First Nation. Sioux Lookout has declared a state of emergency to assist in the evacuation efforts.

There were 12 new forest fires confirmed by the afternoon of July 03.

  • These fires range in size from 0.1 hectares to 40 hectares and occurred in the districts of Red Lake, Fort Frances, Dryden and Sioux Lookout. Sioux Lookout district had the majority of the new fires (nine) with the remaining districts having one new forest fire apiece.
  • Of note, Sioux Lookout Fire Number 22 is 40 hectares and is located near Jabez Lake, approximately 126 kilometres northeast of Sioux Lookout.

There were eight forest fires confirmed by the end of the day on July 2.

There are currently 28 active fires in the region. 12 are not under control, four are being held, four fires are under control, and eight fires are being observed.

The forest fire hazard is high to extreme across most of the region with a few scattered areas of low to moderate hazard.

Fires of Note

Red Lake Fire Number 23 is 12 kilometres southwest of the community of Keewaywin. This fire is currently 54,643 hectares in size. An incident management team is currently assessing the sprinkler requirements in the area. Aerial ignition opportunities will be looked at as well. Fire Crews and equipment have been funnelled into the area all day.

Red Fire Number 39 – Red Lake 38 and 39 have merged as one fire. The fire size is 11,131.5 hectares. This fire will be managed by an Incident Management Team as part of a larger cluster of fires. The northern portion of this fire continued to work its way northward burning up against the west shore of Pikangikum Lake. The fire is approximately six kilometres southwest of the community on the opposite side of the lake.

Red Lake Fire Number 40 is not under control at 5000 hectares and is located near Nungesser Lake, approximately 40 kilometres north of Red Lake. Air attack from water bombers and sprinkler set-ups on structures continue on this fire. Crews continue to reinforce control lines and dozer guards along with the fire.

Red Lake 14 near Pikangikum and Red Lake 17
Red 14 near Pikangikum is under control at 3,835 hectares. Crews continue to search for hot spots identified through infrared scans.

Red 17 northeast of Trout Lake is under control at 6,507 hectares. Crews continue to re-enforce existing hose lines and extinguish hot spots identified by infrared scanning.

Fire hazard for the Northwest Region
The forest fire hazard is high to extreme across most of the region with an area of low to moderate hazard in the far north of Red Lake and Sioux Lookout districts.

Help prevent forest fires

Adopt safe campfire practices!  Choose the site of your campfire carefully and keep your fire small.  Stay nearby: never leave it unattended.  Put your fire out by drowning it with water.  Be sure that it is extinguished prior to leaving the site.  Stir the ashes with a stick to uncover hot coals and then drown it again.  You can never be too safe.

Consider alternatives to burning brush or yard waste, such as chipping or composting when possible, or saving burn piles for the fall or after the fire season. Use of outdoor fires must follow the outdoor burning rules set out in the Forest Fire Prevention Act of Ontario. Fires are to be started no sooner than two hours before sunset and extinguished no later than two hours after sunrise. Fires should never be left unattended and tools and water should be close at hand to put the fire out. More details on outdoor burning regulations can be found online at Ontario.ca/forestfire

To see a complete list of fires across the province click on our interactive map. You can also get the latest update on the condition of any fire by clicking the fire icon.

Fire numbers and online information:

  • Forest Fire Reporting Number – 310-FIRE (3473)
  • Follow us on Twitter: @OnForestFire