The Ministry of Natural Resources has issued a restricted fire zone order for northeastern Ontario, including the City of Greater Sudbury.
Fire restrictions are in place north of the French and Mattawa rivers, including French River Provincial Park, east to the Quebec border, and then to the western boundary of the northeast region.
The order is in place to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires during a period of high fire hazard, according to the MNR.
The Greater Sudbury Fire Service declared a ban on all open air burning throughout the city, as of July 13 around 10:30 a.m. All open air fires, including campfires, chiminea fireplaces, crop residue fires and any other type of outdoor burning, are prohibited. All open air fire permits have been cancelled for the duration of the ban. Only gas-fired and charcoal barbecues are exempt.
“The open air fire ban applies to privately-owned campgrounds and cottages, farms, vacant lots, homes and apartment units,” Fire Chief Dan Stack said. “The Ministry of Natural Resources has declared an outdoor fire ban throughout our region. It's very important that citizens respect this decision to protect our forests and private property.”
The fire hazard is high to extreme. The outlook for the next several days calls for continuing hot weather and dry conditions. Active burning is expected to take place until significant rainfall occurs, according to the MNR.
In a restricted fire zone, all burning permits are suspended and all open fires are prohibited. Campfires may be allowed at some organized campgrounds or parks that use approved fire pits and meet certain other criteria.
Campers should check with the owners or operators first.
Within the restricted fire one area, people can still use portable gas stoves for cooking and warmth but the public is asked to exercise extreme caution.
Ministry of Natural Resources fire staff and conservation officers will strictly enforce the restrictions on open burning.
Starting or tending a campfire in a restricted fire zone can lead to a fine of up to $1,000.
July 11 saw 22 new fires sparked in the province, half of which were human caused. The others were ignited by lightning strikes.
As of July 11, the number of active fires in the province stood at 35. A total of 641 fires have blazed their way through forests in Ontario.
Fire Services will monitor weather conditions and will advise citizens should this ban be lifted. For updated information on the status of the fire ban, residents are encouraged to phone the automated Fire Info Hotline at 705-674-4455 ext. 2760. For general information about the City's outdoor fire ban, dial 3-1-1 or visit www.greatersudbury.ca.
Posted by Arron Pickard