Regional Fire Situation – May 19, 2018
THUNDER BAY – A return to sunny skies and warmer temperatures is expected to see the forest fire hazard rebound following a wet weather system that reduced much of the southern portion of the region to a low fire hazard over the last 24 hours.
Members of the public are reminded that a Restricted Fire Zone is still in effect despite areas of low fire hazard that prevail at the time of this update. Spring conditions in the forest are quick to change as trees have yet to fully ‘leaf-out’ and dry grasses continue to green up.
The Red Lake District features a moderate hazard in the south to high hazard in the north.
At the time of this update the Kenora, Dryden, Fort Frances, Sioux Lookout, Thunder Bay and Nipigon Districts were predominantly under low forest fire hazard conditions.
There were no new fires by the afternoon of May 19 in the Northwest Region.
Since the beginning of the fire season, there have been 156 fires provincewide, slightly above the 10 year average of 147.
Restricted Fire Zone remains in place for Northwest Region
The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (OMNRF) has declared a Restricted Fire Zone in the Districts of Kenora, Fort Frances, Dryden and the southern portion of the Red Lake, Thunder Bay and Sioux Lookout Districts and along the north shore of Lake Superior in the Nipigon District.
During a Restricted Fire Zone, the use of open fires – such as campfires, or burning of brush or debris, is restricted. Failure to comply could result in fines of up to $25,000 and three months in jail, as well as financial responsibility for the costs incurred in fighting a forest fire.
Portable gas or propane stoves are permitted for use for cooking or warmth, though they should be closely monitored. Portable charcoal BBQs and Hibachis are not permitted unless within 100 metres of a dwelling, or within an organized campground.
Commercial campground operators may allow their guests to enjoy campfires during a Restricted Fire Zone period provided they meet certain conditions.
The Restricted Fire Zone is a temporary measure to reduce the number of new human-caused wildfires as the Aviation Forest Fire and Emergency Services branch of the OMNRF expects the elevated forest fire hazard to continue into the foreseeable future.
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)
- Twitter account
- For guidelines on safe outdoor fire management ontario.ca/fireprevention
Report prepared by Chris Marchand