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Busy weekend on fire scene

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It was a busy weekend for the Aviation, Forest Fire and Emergency Services program, with 28 new forest fires reported in the Northwest Region.

Aggressive air attack with CL-415 heavy waterbombers was required on a number of the fires.

FireRanger crews, meanwhile, have established firelines to contain the spread of flames, and placed values protection sprinkler equipment on buildings.

Aerial detection aircraft have been flying patrols across the high-risk areas and are reporting new fires daily.

Logistics personnel are providing support to the firefighting effort, transporting fuel, equipment, and personnel to fire attack bases in the region.

This aggressive response has resulted in a number of the new fires being declared “out” within 24 hours or less.

Four new fires were reported in the Northwest Region yesterday, with more expected by day’s end.

An additional 24 new fires were reported Saturday, with most of them in the Sioux Lookout District, followed in number by Nipigon and Thunder Bay districts.

One blaze of note is Nipigon Fire #19.

Located about 35 km southeast of Nibinamik (Summer Beaver), this is a 1,500-hectare, lightning-caused fire that currently is classed as “being observed.”

Values protection sprinklers have been set up on cabins in the area.

Lightning is the main cause of new fires, but human-caused fires also are being reported.

Since April 1, there have been 139 fires in the Northwest Region, charring 2,142.4 hectares.

Hot, dry weather has pushed the fire hazard to “high” across most of the region, and “extreme” in the far north sectors.

The hazard is “moderate” in the southwest sectors of Kenora and Fort Frances District, and rain with a risk of thunderstorms is forecast to track across the central and southern portions of the region today.

This should result in a “low” to “moderate” fire hazard, but the far north will remain in a “high” to “extreme” hazard.

Report forest fires at 310-FIRE (3473).

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