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Fire crews respond to Sept. 11 forest fire in Woods Harbour area

Firefighters gather near the scene of a fire in the Upper Woods Harbour area on Sept. 11 to set up a base and plan their attack. KATHY JOHNSON
Firefighters gather near the scene of a fire in the Upper Woods Harbour area on Sept. 11 to set up a base and plan their attack. KATHY JOHNSON - Kathy Johnson

WOODS HARBOUR, N.S. – Fire crews from the Department of Lands and Forestry and several local fire departments including Woods Harbour/Shag Harbour and Island Barrington Passage have responded to a fire in the woods behind the power line in the Upper Woods Harbour area in Shelburne County.

The call came in around mid-Tuesday afternoon, Sept. 11.

Firefighters that were sent in to assess the situation reported back that afternoon that the fire was growing and starting to crown (reaching the tree tops).

While rain was in the forecast for Sept. 11, the area had not seen any precipitation yet, and winds are gusty. There was no word at the time this story was written about whether or not a chopper is being brought in.

Bruce Nunn, a spokesperson for the Department of Lands and Forestry and the Department of Environment, provided this update later on Tuesday on where things stood late afternoon.

“The fire remains out of control at 10 hectares,” said Nunn. “Twelve Lands and Forestry Department firefighters and eight volunteer fire department staff continue to fight the fire with pumps and hoses. The area has not received any appreciable rain yet today and the fire is burning hot and deep.”

The situation will continue to be updated as information becomes available.

This latest fire comes after Lands and Forestry crews were Kept busy late last week and over the past weekend extinguishing four fires in the Oak Park, Oak Park Lake, Pubnico Lake/Barrington River areas in southwestern Nova Scotia. Lands and Forestry spokesperson Jim Rudderham said it was believed that two of those fires were as a result of burning brush and two were from camp fires.

It has been very dry in southwestern Nova Scotia this summer, with well below the normal rainfall average. All of western Nova Scotia was under a burn ban on Sept. 11, and Shelburne and Yarmouth counties have been under fire restrictions for a lengthier period. Data on Environment Canada's website shows that Yarmouth received 31.6 mm of rain during the months of July and August this year compared to 189.6 mm in July and August in 2017.

According to Environment Canada, after today (Sept. 11) there is no rain forecasted in southwestern Nova Scotia the rest of the week.

THE NOVA SCOTIA BURNING RESTRICTIONS MAP IS UPDATED DAILY AT 2 PM

Much of Nova Scotia was under a NO BURN fire restriction on Sept. 11. NOVA SCOTIA GOVERNMENT
Much of Nova Scotia was under a NO BURN fire restriction on Sept. 11. NOVA SCOTIA GOVERNMENT

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