DRYDEN, ONT. — Four new forest fires were reported across northwestern Ontario on Tuesday, the same day the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry declared a broad swath of the region a Restricted Fire Zone.
The move came just days before the Victoria Day long weekend and the opening of the fishing season for walleye.
The City of Thunder Bay and the municipalities of Shuniah, Dryden, Kenora and Red Lake have also imposed fire bans within their local boundaries, which means all burning permits are suspended.
The MNRF reported eight active fires across the northwest on Tuesday.
The four new outbreaks included a 20 hectare blaze near Silvertip Lake in the Fort Frances district.
Three fires are located in the vicinity of Pikangikum, but they are listed as either being held, under control or under observation.
Under a RFZ, the use of open fires such as campfires or burning of brush or debris is prohibited. Portable gas or propane stoves are allowed for cooking or warmth. Portable charcoal BBQs and Hibachis are not permitted unless within 100 metres of a dwelling or within an organized campground.
The restrictions apply to the MNRF's districts of Kenora, Fort Frances, and Dryden, the southern portion of the Red Lake, Sioux Lookout and Thunder Bay districts, and along the north shore of Lake Superior in the Nipigon district.