Bush fire could have been much worse with dry conditions, says local fire chief

PROVIDENCE BAY—With the dry weather conditions in the area, it was fortunate that a bush fire did not get too out of hand at a farm property in Providence Bay recently. 

“The property owner had a little brush fire that just got away from him,” said John Reid, fire chief for the municipality of Central Manitoulin. The burn area on a field got out of control, and made its way to the adjacent pine tree forest area. Fortunately, fire fighters were able to douse the flames before it spread past this area. “It could have been a heck  of a lot worse; the ground is dry and the long-term weather report is for hot, dry weather in the area,” said Mr. Reid.  

The Central Manitoulin volunteer fire department responded to the call of the fire at 2:31 pm Saturday afternoon.   

Fortunately, no one was hurt in the blaze, and the fire was not in close proximity to the house on the property. 

The fire ignited again the following Sunday. “We got the call at 6:00 am that one small pine tree fell over and ignited again on the edge of the strand of pine trees,” said Mr. Reid. Firefighters were on the scene for about an hour putting out the blaze.

Mr. Reid said with the dry, hot conditions expected to continue, “I’m thinking of putting a fire ban in place and will be getting in touch with other fire chiefs around the Island on this.”

Since this story was written, most Island fire departments have enacted fire bans. See Page 5 for the story.