No injuries, few details in water bomber incident

Staff ~ The Telegram
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A water bomber similar to the one above apparently experienced some difficulties during operations fighting the forest fires in Labrador. The Department of Transportation and Works is remaining tight-lipped about details surrounding the incident, but did confirm that two pilots in the aircraft were not hurt. — Submitted photo

Forest fire suppression efforts continued in Labrador West Wednesday on a fire that’s been burning for a week and a half and is still considered out of control. Few details have been given about an incident with one of the water bombers working on the blaze other than to say that there were no injuries.

The Department of Transportation and Works confirmed Wednesday evening that a water bomber working on a forest fire in Labrador West was involved in an incident while picking up water on Moosehead Lake. Other than stating that the pilot and co-pilot were not injured and that alternate resources were being provided to assist with the fire suppression efforts, the department released little else about what happened.

 An update on the Department of Natural Resources website said Wednesday evening that ground crews were working in priority zones to extinguish hot spots. The Wabush fire has three water bombers, six helicopters and 34 personnel working to get it under control.

During the weekend, people from Wabush were given an evacuation notice due to poor air quality and the immediacy of the fire. They were allowed back to their homes later in the weekend, but are still being advised to be ready to evacuate at any time.

Smoke within the town of Wabush Wednesday was reportedly not from the Wabush blaze at all, but from fires in Northern Quebec.

The incident with the water-bomber has been reported to Transport Canada and the Transportation Safety Board.

The Department of Transportation and Works will conduct its own investigation.

Organizations: Department of Transportation and Works, Department of Natural Resources, Transport Canada Transportation Safety Board

Geographic location: Labrador West, Wabush, Moosehead Lake Northern Quebec.The

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