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Out of control ; Forest fire shuts down highway near Porters Lake, N.S.

Out of control ; Forest fire shuts down highway near Porters Lake, N.S.
Canada
On Saturday, at around 2 p.m., Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency tweeted that its crews, alongside Nova Scotia Lands and Forestry crews, are working on a brush fire near Highway 107 Exit 19 in close proximity to West Porters Lake Road. The portion of the highway has since been closed, with crews asking motorists to avoid the area.

Officials say at least eight Halifax Fire stations have responded; meanwhile, 15 personnel and three helicopters from Lands and Forestry have been deployed.

Jim Rudderham, Lands and Forestry acting manager for forest protection, says the fire is 40 hectares in size. As of around 4:00 p.m., he says the fire is "out of control."

Its very dry out. We had a beautiful week of sunny skies, and it dried the forest out, says Rudderham. The current conditions high temperatures, low humidity and some wind are prime conditions for fires to burn.

The fire has spread rapidly due to conditions such as high winds, and jumped the highway spreading on both sides of Highway 107.

Around 2:00 p.m., Environment Canada issued an air quality statement warning residents in Halifax Metro and Halifax County West of smoke in their area.

Residents are being evacuated from their homes. The Lake Echo Community Centre on Highway 7 is open as an evacuation centre for residents who have been forced from their homes.
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