Saturday, June 21, 2008

Porters Lake Fire Update: One Week On

Well, it looks like our big fire will have cost about $750,000. Eep. (CBC) And that's just the cost of fighting the fire. No word on how much it cost in business (having that main highway closed for several days, businesses without power, people not going to work, etc. etc.) The latest news is that a forestry worker said on Friday afternoon he saw a woman on an ATV trail (that's All Terrain Vehicle, for those who live in non-ATV places) in Lake Echo (right next to Porters Lake), trying desperately with a small bucket, to put out a fire that had already spread far beyond her tiny bucket's ability to cope. He called 911 and left, just as a dude on an ATV showed up with some hamburger buns on the back of his vehicle.

(Don't get me started on ATVs. Just don't.)

But, in any case, this was one of those "unofficial" trails (aren't most of them?) and it's way back in the woods, and someone decided to have a campfire. It was really, really stupid. This was one of the windiest days of the year. Like, it was creepy windy, getting up to huge gusts that were hard to walk against. NOT the time for a BBQ in an open pit in dry woods. I understand that fire can get out of control FAST, way faster than you might imagine, but C'MON! I feel bad for them, because the guilt must be horrible. (If it's true - which we don't know yet, they have to investigate further). It was just a really stupid mistake.

God grant that our stupid mistakes don't have such consequences. Amen.

A local DJ is hosting a party (and providing entertainment) for all the volunteers (firefighter and otherwise) who helped fight the blaze and care for the evacuees, at the Lake Echo Community Centre on June 27th. The note advertising this event says it's a potluck, so to call Dude (I forget his real name) and tell him what you're bringing. You're having a party on a Friday night (6pm - 1am) after a horribly stressful event that everyone needs to get rid of their excess nervous energy from, and you want everyone coming to CALL you? Last I heard, the rumour (there's that word again) is that over 6,000 people plan to attend. :D I think this is going to be a little bigger than Dude thought. Everyone wants to thank these people, and everyone wants to have a good time.

We'll see how it all goes! And I'll keep you posted on the cause of the fire, if it's true cause is ever discovered.

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