Morning News – July 19


A mix of sun and cloud. 40 percent chance of showers late this afternoon with risk of a thunderstorm. Local smoke. Wind becoming southwest 20 km/h this morning. High 24. Humidex 28. UV index 8 or very high.
Tonight – Mainly cloudy with 40 percent chance of showers. Risk of a thunderstorm this evening. Local smoke this evening and after midnight. Wind southwest 20 km/h becoming light early this evening. Wind becoming northeast 20 gusting to 40 late this evening. Low 12.

Special air quality statement in effect for:

  • Mapping from

    Chapleau – Gogama

  • Elliot Lake – Ranger Lake
  • Fort Hope – Webequie
  • Geraldton – Manitouwadge – Hornepayne
  • Greater Sudbury and vicinity
  • Kapuskasing – Hearst
  • Kirkland Lake – Temiskaming Shores – Temagami
  • Lake Nipigon – Wabakimi
  • Manitoulin – Blind River – Killarney
  • North Bay – West Nipissing
  • Pickle Lake – Wunnummin Lake
  • Red Lake – Ear Falls
  • Sandy Lake – Pikangikum
  • Sault Ste. Marie – Superior East
  • Sioux Lookout – Savant Lake
  • Timmins – Cochrane
  • Wawa – White River – Pukaskwa

High levels of air pollution due to smoke from ongoing forest fires.

Smoke plumes from active fires in northwestern Ontario and eastern Manitoba will affect the area resulting in deteriorated air quality across much of northern Ontario.

Conditions are expected to improve tonight or Tuesday morning as winds shift to a more northerly direction with the passage of a cold front.

If you or those in your care are exposed to wildfire smoke, consider taking extra precautions to reduce your exposure. Wildfire smoke is a constantly changing mixture of particles and gases which includes many chemicals that can be harmful to your health.


Status of cases in Algoma

There are three active casee of COVID-19 in the Algoma District today (Sault Ste. Marie and Area).

Immunization Uptake and Coverage in Algoma (Last updated: 11:50 AM, July 16, 2021)

Doses administered to Algoma residents

Total doses administered – 134,833
# of people who are fully vaccinated – 54,450
# of people who have received at least 1 dose – 80,372

70.2% has received at least one dose
79.3% (aged 12+) has received at least one dose
53.7% (aged 12+) are fully vaccinated (received two doses)


Northeast Forest Fire Region

Waw007 – 0.1ha, out (Cameron Lake)
WAW008 – 2.8ha (up from 1ha), being held (north of Beeline Lake, east of Killala Lake)
WAW009 – 4.2ha (up from 3.2 on the 17th) 0.1ha, not under control (west of Eric Lake, Hwy 614)

There were no new fires discovered in the Northeast region by the afternoon of July 18.
There are thirteen active fires across the region, of these, one is not under control at this time, two are being held, three are under control, and seven are being observed.

The fire hazard ranges from high to extreme in the northern portion of the region with the exception of the far north, which is showing mostly a moderate to high hazard. Other areas in the region are seeing a low to moderate hazard today.


Northwest Forest Fire Region – Five new fires were discovered in the northwest region by the late afternoon of July 18, with more reports yet to be investigated. Last night there were at least three systems of thunderstorms that moved through northwestern Ontario, hopefully not sparking many new fires.

As of yesterday afternoon, there were 101 active fires in the northwest region. Thirty fires were not under control, eight fires were being held, 20 fires were under control and 43 fires were being observed. Seven fires were called out yesterday.

The wildland fire hazard is extreme throughout the Fort Frances and Dryden sectors. High to extreme hazard conditions persist in the Kenora, Thunder Bay, and southern portions of Red Lake, Sioux Lookout and Nipigon sectors. Some far north locations feature low to moderate fire hazard.

There have been three First Nation communities affected by forest fire smoke: Poplar Hill First Nation (evacuated), and Deer Lake First Nation and Pikangikum First Nation which are ongoing evacuation. 2,055 evacuees are being hosted in Thunder Bay, Kapuskasing, Cochrane, Dryden, Sudbury, Sioux Lookout, Timmins and Cornwall.

ON511 is warning that along Hwy 105 (north of Ear Falls and Red Lake area), visibility can be reduced due to smoke from nearby forest fires. Please make sure your headlights are on and use caution travelling Hwy 105 northerly to Red Lake.

Restricted Fire Zone boundaries updated to include Thunder Bay and portions of Nipigon and Wawa districts

Due to high to extreme forest fire hazard conditions, effective 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 10, the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry has issued updated boundaries for a Restricted Fire Zone in the Kenora, Fort Frances, Dryden and Thunder Bay Districts and portions of the Sioux Lookout, Red Lake, Nipigon and Wawa Districts.  The Restricted Fire Zone will be in effect until further notice. Outdoor fires are banned. Portable gas stoves may still be used BUT must be handled with extreme care.


News Tidbits:

There will be some delays today at the Magpie River Bridge for a Recurring-Engineering Investigation.

Algoma University and Sault College are recommending but not requiring students and staff to get vaccinated against COVID-19 if they are going to be on campus this fall. Currently, Western University is requiring students who will be living in residence to have at least one dose of the COVID vaccine. Students at Western’s affiliated university colleges (Brescia Exterior. Brescia University College · Huron Exterior · Huron University College · King’s Exterior) also have to be immunized. The Toronto Star is reporting that there will be no capacity limits on classes or physical distancing necessary (from a memo obtained by the Star).

It was nice to see the new pavement at the Big Bird Inn and Subway!

Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, will be joined by Stan Cho, MPP for Willowdale, as well as members of the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority and Greenbelt Foundation to make an announcement at 11 a.m.

Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, will be joined by Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, and Sam Oosterhoff, MPP for Niagara West, to make an announcement about funding support for Ontario’s agri-food tourism industry at 12 Noon.

Ministers Jill Dunlop, (Colleges and Universities), and David Piccini (Environment, Conservation and Parks), will be making announcements at 12:15 p.m.


Did you know? Sunday was Lake Superior Day. A really neat fact about Lake Superior is that the average underwater visibility is 27 feet. Underwater visibility in places reaches 100 feet. Lake Superior has been described as “the most oligotrophic lake in the world.”