Ontario Newsroom

Update On Northwestern Ontario Forest Fires And Evacuations - Aug. 3

Archived News Release

Update On Northwestern Ontario Forest Fires And Evacuations - Aug. 3

Ministry of the Solicitor General

All communities affected by the recent forest fires in northwestern Ontario have been deemed safe, with Ontario returning all displaced residents back to their homes by the end of today.

Provincial evacuation efforts were aided by the federal government, the Canadian Forces, leaders of evacuated communities and communities that hosted evacuated residents.

More than 2000 firefighters - including 600 out-of-province firefighters - continue to suppress fires. Communities are currently not at risk from smoke or fire.

The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care's Emergency Medical Assistance Team has demobilized and personnel have returned home.

The Ministry of Natural Resources will continue to monitor forest fire activity in the northwest and will take whatever action is needed to protect communities and keep residents safe.



Daily update

Number of fires active


New fires


Hectares to date


Fire personnel engaged

Over 2,000

Out-of-province personnel


Fire Fighting Aircraft

11 heavy bombers, 4 light bombers (twin otters), 85 helicopters

Repatriation Aircraft

8 planes

Number of evacuees currently displaced


Communities partially evacuated

Deer Lake First Nation

Communities fully returned

Ebametoong/Fort Hope First Nation

Mishkeegogamang First Nation

Cat Lake First Nation

Koocheching First Nation

North Spirit Lake First Nation

Kasabonika Lake First Nation

Keewaywin First Nation

Kingfisher Lake First Nation

Wawakapewin First Nation

Sandy Lake First Nation

Evacuated Community

Host Community

Deer Lake First Nation

Smiths Falls (164)

Projected number of residents being repatriated today

164 planned

Deer Lake (164) - from Smiths Falls

Residents Returned Home

3,544 (total thus far)

Kingfisher 272 - from Ottawa*

Sandy Lake 1,727 - from Arthur, Greenstone, Wawa, Moosonee, Ignace, Sioux Lookout, Thunder Bay**

Deer Lake 176 - from Smiths Falls

Wawakapewin 9 - from Smiths Falls

Keewaywin 343 - from Greenstone, Winnipeg**

North Spirit Lake 200 - from Greenstone

Koocheching 20 - from Dryden

Cat Lake 363 - from Dryden, Matachewan and Kapuskasing

Eabametoong/Fort Hope  281 - from Greenstone

Mishkeegogamang 153 - from Dryden and Sioux Lookout

* Note: This number includes four Kasabonika residents who were in Kingfisher at the time of the evacuation. They have been returned to their own community.

** Note: These numbers include those who self-identified and were not registered in host communities. They have been returned to their communities


“The 2011 fire season is far from over, but the immediate threat to communities during one of the toughest fire seasons on record has subsided. On behalf of all the residents, I want to thank our fire crews and their support teams - as well as those fire crews from outside Ontario who leant their support in our hour of need. These fire professionals met and exceeded every expectation.”

Linda Jeffrey

Minister of Natural Resources

“Thank you to all the communities across Ontario who warmly welcomed the people temporarily displaced by the fires. Your hospitality and generosity brought comfort to those who were suddenly uprooted from their homes, and helped to keep families and communities united during a difficult time.”

Jim Bradley

Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services

Media Contacts

  • Greg Flood

    Communications Branch


  • Ministry of Natural Resources

    Media Desk, Communications Services Branch




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