Bas-Saint-Laurent: the burning of peat bogs is heading toward highway 20
The violent fire declared in the region of Kamouraska was not a threat Friday, however, it is back strong on Saturday and has caused the evacuation of several residents of Rivière-Ouelle. He is currently heading towards highway 20.
The fire originated in the fields of Peatlands Lambert in Rivière-Ouelle, several hundreds of hectares have gone up in smoke.
At the end of the day Friday, it was not lucrative danger to nearby homes, but the response teams were still on their guard. However, winds and drought have done to change the direction of the blaze, which has complicated the work of firefighters. Thirty homes were evacuated in Rivière-Ouelle, qc on Saturday morning.
“The SOPFEU (Société de protection des forêts contre le feu) is in charge of the combat portion in forest, 120 hectares of forest are affected, and the firefighters are in charge of the bogs,” says Mélanie Morin, a spokesman for the SOPFEU.
The fire is more active, the four tankers will be sent to the area to fight the flames, Saturday at the end of the day. “In the last few hours, the winds have pushed the fire toward highway 20. We will make a recommendation to redirect traffic,” adds the spokesperson.
The thick smoke and the activities of the tanker aircraft may have impacts on road safety in the area.
The prefect of the MRC de Kamouraska, Yvon Soucy, keeps the citizens informed on his page in Facebook. To 14h, it is stated that the municipalities that could be affected by the smoke are Rivière-Ouelle, Saint-Philippe-de-Neri, Mont-Carmel, St-Denis-de-la-Bouteillerie, St-Pacôme, Saint-Gabriel-Lalemant, Saint-Onésime-d Ixworth, Ste-Anne-de-la-Pocatière and La Pocatière.
A warning about the quality of the air is also in force in the regions of Kamouraska, of Pohénégamook, Rivière-du-Loup and Trois-Pistoles.
Thick clouds of smoke were already visible and could grow worse in the next few hours. “It’s really the bog, when it burns, it burns intensely, and it made a lot of smoke. Even if the fire is controlled, people should expect to smoke,” says Mélanie Morin.
According to people who were passing in the area of Rivière-Ouelle early in the day Saturday, on highway 20, it was somewhat difficult to breathe properly, a nasty smell prevailed also in the air.
The fire of peat bogs could still make progress, it is advisable to all the residents in the area to review the updates of the situation transmitted by their municipality.
It is to be noted that the SOPFEU is already very busy on the side in the Lac-Saint-Jean where a forest fire is raging in the area of Chute-des-Passes.