Manitoba Wildfire Service reports 120 active fires currently burning in province

Click to play video: 'Spike in active fires burning in province' Spike in active fires burning in province
The number of fires burning in Manitoba has almost doubled compared to earlier in the week – Jul 16, 2021

As of Friday, there are currently 120 active fires burning in Manitoba.

That’s according to the assistant director of Manitoba Wildfire Service, who told 680 CJOB that the increase — almost double the number reported on Tuesday — is due, in part, to sparks caused by lightning.

Read more: Wildfires blazing out of control in Manitoba and other provinces

“Unfortunately, with the weather patterns that have travelled through the province, we’ve had a number of lightning strikes,” said Don Hallett.

“We have a large number of fires that have started in northern Manitoba due to lightning. Also, approximately 35 new fires in northwest Manitoba, and about 35 fires in eastern Manitoba — all predominately from lightning sparks, unfortunately.”

Hallett said none of the fires are currently threatening people’s residences or property, but the need to keep resources nearby in case communities are at risk means that some fires in very remote areas can only be monitored, not actively combated.

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And while most Manitobans seem to be following rules avoiding fire pits, backyard fires, etc., under such dry conditions, nature is the real threat, he said.

“There’s not a significant amount of precipitation headed our way, so we’ve got to hope some of those patterns change and we start to see some rain in Manitoba.”

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