Forest Fire Situation Update Northwest Region July 11, 2019 

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

THUNDER BAY – There was one new forest fire confirmed by the afternoon of July 11.

  • Red lake 49 is 1,617.3 hectares and is located along the Manitoba border north of Frances lake. The fire is being observed to allow for the natural ecological benefits of fire on the landscape.

There are currently 15 active fires in the region. Three are not under control, three are under control, and nine fires are being observed.

 Fires of Note

  • Red Lake Fire Number 23:
    • Ignition operations were effective yesterday in tying the fire into natural boundaries along the north side, south of the Community of Keewaywin.
    • Crews continue working with helicopter bucketing support in priority areas on the north side of the fire.
    • Fire behaviour was reduced this afternoon due to higher relative humidity levels under cloud cover.
    • Minimal growth was experienced today. The fire is not under control at about 92,648 hectares.
  • Red Fire Number 39:
    • Red Lake 39 currently covers approximately 50,755.76 hectares west of the community of Pikangikum.
    • An incident management team has been assigned to this fire.
    • Crews continue to monitor established values protection within the community and surrounding area.
    • Firefighters are working to establish hose lines along east flank of the fire.
    • Due to recent precipitation, no growth was observed on the fire Wednesday.
  • Red Lake Fire Number 40:
    • This fire is not under control at 32,863 hectares and is located near Nungesser Lake, approximately 40 kilometres north of Red Lake.
    • Recent precipitation has assisted fire suppression efforts.
    • Sprinkler systems remain in place to protect values in the area.

Fire hazard for the Northwest Region

The forest fire hazard is currently low to moderate across most of the region with an area of high hazard in the far north of Sioux Lookout and Red Lake districts. More rain is in the forecast.

Travel restrictions in parts of Red Lake District due to forest fires

Pursuant to the Emergency Area Order signed July 9, 2019, an Implementation Order has been issued by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry prohibiting access and travel in portions of Red Lake District where there are public safety hazards as a result of active fire behaviour from a number of fires in the Red Lake area. The Order restricts travel, access and use in an identified area (see attached map below) and may be modified regularly to reflect changing fire conditions. This measure has been put in place to ensure public safety while allowing fire personnel to safely and effectively suppress the fires in the identified area. Unless authorized by a travel permit issued by the Red Lake District office of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), no person shall enter into the hatched area identified on the attached Implementation Order (IO-2019-04-Red03).

All travel and use of the Coli road, Sidace road, Bandit road Rita Lake Road and North Road is prohibited. All travel and use within the perimeter of fire Red 39 and Red 40 are prohibited. All travel on the Nungesser road through Fire # 40 will be escorted traffic from 06:00 to 21:00 CST until this order is rescinded. Nungesser road will remain open after these restricted hours. If a member of the public believes that access within the restricted travel area is necessary for non-recreational purposes, please call contact the Red Lake District office to request a travel authorization permit.  MNRF will review the request for access based on the rationale provided, local fire activity, and the potential fire risk.

Please visit ontario.ca/forestfire to view the current access restrictions and fire activity as this site is being updated regularly.

See the restricted travel and access areas on this PDF map http://www.affes.mnr.gov.on.ca/extranet/IO-RED03_EN.pdf (Note: this map gets updated regularly).