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Emergency orders expanded in northeast Ont. due to forest fires, evacuation west of Sudbury

While firefighters get more forest fires under control in northern Ontario, travel restrictions declared under an emergency order are being expanded in several communities, including immediate evacuation orders for an area west of Sudbury.

As of Tuesday morning, northern Ontario has 47 active wildfires – 29 in the northeast and 18 in the northwest. This is down only one from the weekend, however, the number of not-under-control forest fires in the region has dropped by 10 to 23.

By Tuesday evening, a fire that started Sunday in the Sudbury District -- named Sudbury 17, located about two kilometres west of RR810 east of Mississagi Provincial Park -- has grown to 1,024 ha in just two days, prompting the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry to order the immediate evacuation for the following areas west of Greater Sudbury, unless a travel permit is issued by MNRF:

  • All travel and use of Highway 810 (also known as the Massey Tote Rd) north of the 17-mile cross over at UTM Zone 17 E 412333 N 5152544
  • All travel and use of Highway 810 (also known as the Massey Tote Rd) south of Ritchie Falls at UTM Zone 17 E 403379 N 5177353

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There are also travel, use and access restrictions to these areas to protect public safety and help get the fire under control:

  • Highway 810 (also known as the Massey Tote Rd) north of the 17-mile crossover at UTM Zone 17 E 412333 N 5152544
  • Highway 810 (also known as the Massey Tote Rd) south of the Ritchie Falls at UTM Zone 17 E 403379 N 5152544
  • John’s Creek Rd at Porter Cree at UTM Zone 17 E 446601 N 5145635
  • Fox Lake Rd at Centre Creek at UTM Zone 17 E 446870 N 5162934

Travel, use and access restrictions put in place under an implantation order by the MNRF for the Hearst-Cochrane-Kapuskasing area on Saturday were expanded at 7 a.m. Tuesday.

The emergency order went into effect "to protect public safety and to facilitate effective fire suppression" in this area due to two fires between Iroquois Falls and the Quebec border that started June 2, Cochrane 6 -- which has grown to 1239 ha – and Cochrane 7 at 1,840 ha.

Travel to the following areas is prohibited unless MNRF authorizes a permit:

  • Reaume Esker Road beginning where it intersects with Town Dump Road at UTM Zone 17 E 488675, N 5428518
  • Potter Road West of the TC Energy Plant at UTM Zone 17 E 507658, N 5413024
  • Connaught-Evelyn Road North of the Pallet Lake access point at UTM Zone 17 E 491692, N 5410633

It was expanded Tuesday to include:

  • Translimit Road eastwards beginning where it intersects with the Northwest Industrial Road at UTM Zone 17 E 529709 N 5434121
  • Translimit Road west of the Ontario-Quebec border at UTM Zone 17 E 608042 N 5423187
  • Northwest Industrial Road north of the Abitibi bridge at UTM Zone 17 E 523719 N 540251

Questions and permit requests can be made by emailing mnrf.coc@ontario.ca or by calling 705-272-7178.

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Restrictions that were put in place May 31 in the Chapleau-Wawa area due to the Wawa 3 fire near White River are continuing. This fire has remained at 6,810.6 hectares for several days but is not yet under control.

Travel is prohibited to these areas unless a permit is approved by MNRF:

  • 400 south of where Road 400 intersects the White River Forest Unit boundary,
  • Road 300 south of the intersection of Road 300 and Road 350,
  • Road 500 west of the intersection of Road 500 and Road 550,
  • Road 226 west of the intersection of Road 226 and Hwy. 631,
  • “Mink Lake East" Road north of intersection "Mink Lake East" Road and Hwy. 631,
  • "Mink Lake Boat Launch" Road north of intersection "Mink Lake Boat Launch" Road and Hwy. 631,
  • Operational Road 631-02 north of intersection Road 631-02 and Hwy. 631,
  • Operational Road 631-01 (aka. Tower Road) north of intersection Road 631-01 and Hwy. 631,
  • Road 100 north of intersection Road 100 and the Picnic Lake Road,
  • North Reagan Road north of intersection North Reagan Road and Road 50,
  • Road 10 east of intersection of Road 10 and Hwy 17
  • Road 99 east of intersection of Road 99 and Hwy 17
  • Operational Road 631-05 east of intersection of operational Road 631-05 and Hwy 631

Questions and permit requests can be made by calling 705-856-2396.

FIRES OF NOTE

A forest fire named Chapleau 3, which started June 1, continues to grow in intensity and has grown to 500 ha. It is still not under control.

"Fire behaviour and smoke has made it difficult to put fire ranger crews on the ground," MNRF said.

"This fire is located about 53km south of Hwy. 101 and 67 km east of Hwy. 129."

Sudbury 17, located about two kilometres west of RR810 east of Mississagi Provincial Park, has grown to 335 ha in two days. Aerial suppression happened June 4 and is still not under control.

Another fire, Chapleau 6, started Sunday between Missinaibi Provincial Park and The Shoals Provincial Park is still not under control and is 209 ha.

SAFETY

Stay clear of waterbomber planes that scoop up water from lakes.

"If you see one flying overhead while fishing or enjoying time on the water, move to shore as safely as possible to allow room for them to perform their scoop," MNRF said on social media.

RESTRICTED FIRE ZONE

Most of northern Ontario – except for parts of the Far North -- remains under a restricted fire zone, which prohibits open-air burning and includes campfires.

"Portable gas or propane stoves may be used for cooking and warmth but must be handled with extreme caution. All burning permits are suspended.

Failure to comply with the fire ban could result in a fine of up to $25,000, three months in jail and financial responsibility for any costs incurred in fighting a forest fire caused by the illegal blaze.

IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING

Call 310-FIRE to report a forest fire north of the French and Mattawa rivers and 911 for all wildfires south of those rivers.

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