'It happened so quickly': Wildfire forces evacuation of cabins near Beaver Creek
WINNIPEG -- Manitoba Conservation says a wildfire close to the Beaver Creek Provincial Park has forced the evacuation of cabins in the area.
Water bombers and fire crews were fighting the wildfire into the night on Monday, a spokesperson from Manitoba Conservation told CTV News. The spokesperson said the Manitoba Wildfire Service is responding to a fire north of Hecla Island.
The fire burning near Pine Dock Road prompted Manitoba Conservation to evacuate a number of cabins, RCMP told CTV News, adding the fire is approximately one mile west of the cabins.
The provincial spokesperson said the evacuations have been completed, but the fire is threatening up to 25 cottages.
"There are reports that several cottages have been destroyed," the spokesperson said. "Water bombers and other crews are actively working on the fire, but efforts are being hampered by extensive smoke."
Rebecca Sloan, a resident of the Beaver Creek cottage development near Beaver Creek Provincial Park, says they were told to evacuate around 3 p.m. on Monday afternoon. The development is about 90 kilometres north of Gimli along the shores of Lake Winnipeg.
"It happened so quickly. We were notified that there was a fire and within half an hour the fire had jumped the road and there were flames in the field," Sloan told CTV News. "I was just running to grab things because the smoke got so thick, we knew we had to get out."
Sloan said they were told a number of cabins had been damaged by the fire. She said there are only about six residents who live in the area year-round.
"It's pretty darn scary and the smoke was really thick when we left," she said. "I felt lucky to be able to see to get out – the smoke was that bad."
Manitoba Hydro tweeted Monday evening that forest fires in the Pine Dock area have caused outages for about 370 customers. It said crews won't be able to begin the repairs until working conditions are safe. There is no estimated time of restoration at this point.
RCMP said officers are currently providing traffic control. There have been no injuries reported.