Northwest District Wildfire Update – August 14, 2020

Wildfire Update

THUNDER BAY – Progress was made on Red Lake #49 today. The rain has helped to keep the fire from growing. The Ontario Government has implemented an Implementation Order on the evacuation.

Earlier Updates:

Red Lake #49 Update 1

Red Lake #49 Update 2

Red Lake #49 Update 3

Red Lake #49 Update 4

Red Lake #49 Update 5

August 14, 2020 Time of Report – 1725

Northwest Region

  • Two new fires were confirmed in the Northwest Region by the late afternoon of Aug. 14.
    • Kenora 39 is located on an island in Lake of the Woods, approximately 48 kilometers southwest of Kenora. The 0.1-hectare fire is not under control.
    • Thunder Bay 60 was located near the Trans-Canada Highway approximately 17 kilometers west of Upsala, The 0.1-hectare fire is out.
  • At the time of this update, there are 24 active fires in the Northwest Region. Seven fires were not under control, four fires were being held, three fires were under control and 10 fires were being observed. Six fires were declared out today.
  • The fire hazard ranges from low in the Fort Frances, Dryden and Sioux Lookout sectors, while western portions of the region in Kenora and Red Lake sectors show pockets of moderate and high fire hazard. Nipigon sector features high to extreme fire hazard.

Fires of Note

Red Lake 49

  • With the change in weather, crews were able to make excellent progress on the fire line today
  • The fire is 552 hectares in size and has not grown
  • Rain has reduced the fire behaviour on Red Lake 49
  • The fire has received 16.5 mm of rain as of the morning of Aug. 14
  • Additional rain is forecast in the next 24 hours
  • Crews continue to consolidate hose lines on all sides of the fire
  • Heavy equipment has completed building line around the fire
  • The fire remains 3 kilometers south of the Red Lake townsite
  • 20 crews are committed to suppression. 4 crews are committed to values protection
  • 8 helicopters continue to support crews on the fire line
  • An implementation order was put in place at 08:00 today. Please see the below section or visit ontario.ca/forestfire.
  • The public is encouraged to check the ontario.ca/forestfire website for updates and maps

Nipigon 45

  • Nipigon 45 is now sized at 6,196 hectares
  • Controlled ignition has conducted to try to bring the fire to natural boundaries
  • The fire is located approximately 35 kilometers southwest of Eabametoong First Nation, a remote community
  • On Aug. 12 Chief and Council of Eabametoong issued a stage one evacuation of vulnerable residents to address air quality (smoke) issues as a result of the fire.
  • 9 FireRanger crews are assigned to the fire assisted by helicopters bucketing water on hot spots
  • Light rainfall on portions of the fire
  • An incident command team has been assigned to the fire

Access and Travel Restrictions in Effect – Red Lake District

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is advising the public that due to extreme forest fire activity in the Red Lake area from RED049, an Implementation Order is in effect until further notice that requires the evacuation of non-essential personnel in the affected area and restricts access and use of certain roads and Crown lands.

All travel, use and access to the following areas are restricted: all communities within the Municipality of Red Lake, including Starratt-Olsen, Madsen, Red Lake, Balmertown, Cochenour and Mckenzie Island; Highway 105 north of the intersection of Highway 105 and Bug River, including all side roads to residential areas and tourist camps; Highway 618 from the junction of Highway 105 to and including Starrartt-Olsen as well as the Suffel Lake Road to the Flat Lake culvert; and Highway 125 and all municipal roads and access roads off of Highway 125 including the Nungesser Road to the intersection of East Bay Road.

No person shall enter those areas and all non-essential personnel in those identified areas must evacuate immediately, unless authorized by a travel permit issued by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. For information on how to obtain a travel permit please contact the Red Lake District office 807-727-1349.