Local MNRF firefighters to assist in Fort McMurray
By Angelica Ingram
May 10, 2016
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has confirmed that eight of its firefighters based in Haliburton headed out last week to assist with wildfires around Fort McMurray, Alta.
The Haliburton crew was sent out on Friday, May 6, said Shayne McCool MNRF fire information officer for the northeast region.
“At this point we do have a commitment of up to 119 staff members being sent over to help support in Alberta,” said McCool.
The information officer said the Haliburton crew can work up to 19 days in a row, typically working no more than 14 fire line days, at which point they’ll return.
“At that point Alberta can decide whether or not they need additional resources to replace those staff,” he said. “We’ll continue providing support as long as we can.”
The firefighters are assigned different tasks once deployed to Alberta, either doing initial attack or sustained attack, said McCool.
“The difference being sustained attack would be on a fire that’s already been established, for example a Fort McMurray fire, or they can be handling initial attacks which are the fires that are just discovered,” he said.
“It’s up to the Alberta government to decide where those resources are best used.”
McCool said the Northeast region is committed to helping Fort McMurray in any way they can.