May 25, 2018, – Time of Report 16:48
THUNDER BAY – Uneven rainfall in the Northwest Region and over 11,400 lightning strikes have forest fire officials on the alert for new fire starts in the wake of thunderstorms that tracked through the region over the past 24 hours. By the afternoon of May 25 there were six new fires in the region. At two hectares, Dryden Fire 7 began as a truck on fire that spread to the bush east of the Dryden airport. At the time of this update it was not under control.
Thunder Bay 19 was a small grass fire near the railway line southwest of Armstrong. It is now out. Also declared out were roadside fire Kenora 49 and Sioux Lookout 9 on the north shore of Lac Seul.
Red 30, a 1,600 hectare fire near the Manitoba border, received some overnight rainfall, though the area also experienced a high concentration of lightning strikes. Located 60 kilometres west of Poplar Hill, crews on Red 30 are currently assessing ignition opportunities and limited suppression with fire crews in an effort to contain the fire within natural boundaries.Overnight precipitation is expected to significantly reduce the fire hazard in many areas in the far north.
The Fire Hazard ranges from low in areas of the far north to high in the Dryden District and moderate in the Fort Frances and Thunder Bay Districts.
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.
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