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N.B. forest fire still out-of-control, but 'manageable'

The forest fire in New Brunswick’s Charlotte County has become “manageable” on its third day burning, allowing air tankers and support planes to be shared with Nova Scotia.

“The Stein Lake fire is still listed as out-of-control,” New Brunswick wildfire management officer Roger Collet said Wednesday afternoon.

“We estimate it’s maybe 15 to 20 per cent contained.”

Collet said the fire has burned about 540 hectares of forest in the Bocabec and Chamcook area, with up to 300 hotspots still being monitored.

“We felt confident enough that we were able to help Nova Scotia today, so we sent our water bombers over to help them this morning,” said Collet.

“We had eight of them going back and forth from New Brunswick. We’ve coordinated it so we have four water bombers over Nova Scotia and four over New Brunswick, at all times,” he said.

About 300 people were evacuated from their homes in Bocabec and Chamcook on Sunday afternoon, after an all-terrain vehicle fire spread in the woods.

The fire destroyed one home.

The evacuation order for residents of Bocabec and Chamcook was lifted on Tuesday afternoon, but firefighters expect to be on the ground in the area well into June.


The entire province of New Brunswick is under a burn ban, and people have been asked to avoid activities in the woods — though being in the woods has not been outright banned.

“They’re actually doing it on their own,” Collet said of residents avoiding forested areas.

“So that’s exactly what we wanted.”

Quad NB has asked people to avoid using all-terrain vehicles for the next two weeks.

“We’re trying to be more proactive than reactive,” said Jacques Poirier, Quad NB’s general manager. “All of the clubs that had activities planned for this weekend, and the following weekend, did postpone or cancel their events.”

Forestry companies in New Brunswick, including J.D. Irving Limited and AV Group, have voluntarily placed restrictions on daytime operations until further notice.

“The actual operations that we limit between those hours of 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. is any harvesting, any pre-commercial thinning, tree-planting or road construction,’ said Mike Légère of AV Group. 

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page. Top Stories

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