Northwestern Ontario has been faced with the challenge of trying to fight and contain several large forest fires across the region. One of the large fires of note is Kenora 51 a fire that currently is destroying much of the Woodland Caribou Provincial Park.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry was able to give a detailed update on the fire.
“Kenora 51 is a fire of concern for Wabaseemoong Independent First Nation and the fire is not under control and is 188,236 hectares. The fire continues to burn north of Umfreville Lake and has not been spotted south of the lake,” said Fire Information Officer Jonathan Scott
"Helicopters with buckets and water bombing airplanes are being used to slow the fire. Ignition crews are bringing the fire to natural boundaries, bulldozer lines are being used to improve access. Crews are working to protect community values and critical infrastructure and an Incident Management Team is established on the fire, added Scott
The Kenora 51 fire is approximately 20 kilometres north of Wabaseemoong Independent First Nation and threatening an evacuation of the community.
If an evacuation is needed then the community will have a 12-24 hour grace period to perform a full-scale evacuation, according to a social media post by Wabaseemoong Independent First Nation Chief Waylon Scott.
In Ontario this year there have been a total 1,028 fires to date and a total of over 520,134 hectares that have been affected by forest fires which is double the 10-year-average.
As of yesterday over 100 active forest fires are burning across Northwestern Ontario with 18 fires, not under control, 4 fires being held, 14 fires considered under control and 73 fires are being monitored.
The forest fire hazard is high across most of the region with an area of low to moderate hazard in the southern portions of the Nipigon and Thunder Bay districts.