‘Worst time of the year’ for wildfire risk in Lethbridge County – Lethbridge

Regardless of the wildfire season officially coming to an end on Oct. 31, southern Alberta residents are nonetheless being reminded of the continued dangers current within the fall.

In accordance with Byron Fraser, the fireplace companies coordinator for Lethbridge County, wildfire season isn’t over for them.

“For us out in Lethbridge County it’s really sort of the worst time of 12 months,” Fraser mentioned.

“All of the grass is getting actually cured, and we get all of the winds within the fall, and if we don’t have snow on the bottom all the things’s tremendous dry.

“Leaves are falling off, and that’s one of many largest issues is folks not retaining their yard clear close to their home.”

Learn extra:
62% of Alberta wildfires were caused by humans in 2021

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Fraser defined 2021 has been on par with earlier years relating to the variety of wildfires, with a slight spike in hay fires.

The Metropolis of Lethbridge continues to have a hearth ban within the river valley, which it mentioned is because of each dry situations and to assist forestall social gatherings throughout COVID-19.

It’s not clear when that ban will probably be lifted.

“Proper now in Lethbridge County we would not have a hearth ban on in any respect,” Fraser mentioned. “We all the time encourage folks to make use of warning and all the things.”

In March, large grass fires caused the evacuation of Carmangay residents, which he believes to be probably the most impactful blaze this 12 months.

“That was a fairly large hearth that almost all of southern Alberta was concerned in.”

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Province-wide, there have been fewer hectares of land burned, and fewer human-caused fires than in 2020.

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Alberta Wildfire assisted with 36 fires outdoors the Forest Safety Space, which encompasses a lot of northern Alberta and the Rockies, all the way in which to the Canada-U.S. border.

“Alberta Wildfire responded to 1,307 wildfires and that’s within the forest safety space, and people fires burned slightly below 53 thousand hectares,” defined provincial data officer with Alberta Wildfire Josee St-Onge.

Sixty-two % of these wildfires have been brought on by people, whereas 33 per cent sparked from lightning, and an extra 5 per cent are nonetheless beneath investigation.

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In 2020, almost 90 per cent of wildfires within the province have been brought on by people.

“I believe that highlights the significance of prevention work and realizing that each Alberta that goes out into the forest has a (responsibility) to be accountable with any sort of campfire that they begin,” she added.

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“Ensuring to all the time extinguish them totally earlier than they go away the realm as a result of that is still one of many foremost causes of wildfires within the province.”

St-Onge defined whereas the variety of fires this 12 months is according to the five-year common, there was much less space burned altogether.

She attributes this to quick response occasions, preparedness, and prevention.

“One of many issues that we did see this 12 months that was encouraging was that our hearth bans and hearth restrictions that we put in place — particularly within the southern a part of the province, which has a a lot larger hearth hazard for longer durations of the summer season — have been effectively revered by Albertans.”

© 2021 International Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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