Intégration communautarie 50e anniversaire / 50th Anniversary Community Living

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Dry spring, COVID-19 create challenges for fire fighters

A dry spring isn’t always good news, especially for WN Fire Chief Richard Maranda and his crews. Since the provincial fire ban was lifted on May 16, the WN Fire Service has attended a structure fire on Highway 17 west of Sturgeon Falls; a kitchen fire in Sturgeon Falls; six brush fires; and five burning complaints related to people burning garbage.

On top of all of that, they were also called to a large fire off Mooze Miikan Road East of Sturgeon Falls on May 20. It was that fire that led to thousands of area residents going without power for the majority of the day, as hydro was cut off to protect fire fighters.

“We attended off of the highway, east of Sturgeon. We could see when we got there and the fire was quite a ways North East. We followed the road a few kilometers and still couldn’t find it. All of our apparatuses were parked on the turn around for the plows off of the highway, and we spotted the MNR bombers flying on top of us getting water from the lake to put out the fire. It was the reason for the power outage - the fire had pushed northeast because of the wind blowing and had grown from 3 hectares to 5. When it reached the main powerlines, the MNR fire fighters had to work in the area and to make it safe for them, they cut the hydro going through those lines. It’s one of the main lines that feed Sturgeon Falls and area. With a fire burning like that, the lines themselves can lose integrity and might snap and fall to the ground, endangering the fire fighters. All of it was coordinated by MNR and Hydro One,” Chief Maranda recounts.

Approximately 3000 Greater Sudbury Hydro customers went without power from 10am to 3pm.

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