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Wildfire Information

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FIRESMARTING - WILDFIRE MITIGATION

City of Yellowknife Fuel Reduction Strategy

The City of Yellowknife is moving ahead with the Yellowknife Community Wildfire Protection Plan which has identified specific high risk areas around the City that would benefit from vegetation reduction measures to lower the threat of forest fires impacting the city. 

The 2019 Community Wildfire Protection Plan outlines areas in the City that will be targeted for the fuel reduction strategy. Thinning of coniferous trees and removal of brush is taking place in the greenspace from the area behind Mandeville Drive extending to the Parker Park Ball diamonds.

In 2012, a consultation was done with Montane Forest Management Ltd. to review the Community Wildfire Protection Plan. The plan, which was updated in 2019, outlined priority areas for fuel reduction in Yellowknife. The City is following through, following FireSmarting principles, to reduce the fuel loads and thereby reducing the threat of wildfire impingement on the wildland/urban interface. The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) was consulted concerning wildlife habitat to ensure that all regulations, protocols, and procedures are being followed.

 A request for proposal (RFP) was sent out specifying the fuels reduction:

  • Thin coniferous trees (spruce and pine) to achieve 2 – 3 meter crown spacing;
  • Remove deciduous shrub understory;
  • Remove all dead standing;
  • Remove all dead & down coniferous and deciduous trees and shrubs;
  • Retain all live deciduous overstory stems;
  • Prune limbs to 2 meters above the ground level;
  • Remove resulting debris; a 2-inch layer of chipping/mulching and spreading is acceptable;
  • The trees/brush to be cut to within a couple of inches from the terrain/ground level;
  • An all-terrain vehicle may be used to remove trees and debris from the site but environmental impacts to the surrounding area, terrain and ground must be kept to a minimum;
  • Any area the City determines has been significantly altered by the use of an all-terrain vehicle will be remediated to a standard deemed acceptable by the City;
  • Work is to be completed by December 31, 2020.

 Contracts to reduce the fuel in the above-noted area was awarded to two local companies. It is the contractors’ responsibility to ensure that any debris is either chipped, mulched or removed. Both companies have fire-smarting experts who will ensure fire-smart principals are followed. City staff are monitoring the sites, touching base with the contractors, and ensuring communication updates with the public to keep the public informed and to ensure public safety in these areas. Signs are posted by the contractors and trails are closed when they are working around the trails.

Please respect all signage; stay out of the areas where the signs are posted.

Work will be completed by December 31, 2020.

For more information please contact the city at ggroothuizen@yellowknife.ca or 766-5502.

Additional Resources:

 

FireSmarting Awareness

The greatest risks to properties located within the City of Yellowknife are airborne burning embers which can remain airborne for over 1.5km. FireSmarting Homeowner Checklist will give you the tools to evaluate your property for the level of risk from wildfire, as well as a preparation guide in the event that evacuation is required.  

 To reduce this risk, the following measures can be taken at minimal cost:

Zone 1a: (House - 1.5m out)

  1. Have a 1.5m (5’) non-combustible zone around your home (rock, gravel, sand);
  2. Clear debris (needles, leaves, & other combustibles) from roof & eavestroughs, deck and space under decks;
  3. Remove combustibles stacked against your home.

Zone 1 (Yard - 10m [33’] around home)

  1. If a wildfire advances in your area, remove any vehicles from the driveway (inside the garage or to a safe location)
  2. Maintain your woodpile at least 10m from your home (or any outbuilding).
  3. Remove any tree branches overhanging your roof.
  4. Limit the number of coniferous trees (pine, spruce) and bushes within 10m of your home.
  5. Maintain ground cover within 10m (remove twigs, branches and/or needles, if you have a lawn, keep it mowed).

By participating in the FireSmart  program in the ways outlined above, you are giving yourself and your neighbours the best chance for your home to survive a wildfire.  All Yellowknife residents are urged to take FireSmarting preventive measures, whether or not your property is bordering forested areas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hours of Operation

Winter Hours effective following the Labour Day Weekend
until prior to the Victoria Day Weekend (September to May)
Monday to Friday: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Closed

Summer Hours effective following the Victoria Day Weekend
until prior to the Labour Day Weekend (May to September)
Monday to Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Closed

Mailing Address & Phone Numbers

Yellowknife City Hall
4807 - 52 Street, P.O. Box 580, Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N4

Switchboard - (867) 920-5600
Mayor/City Administrator - (867) 920-5634
Booking Clerk - (867) 669-3457
Municipal Enforcement (MED) - (867) 920-5630
After Hours (MED) - (867) 920-2737
After Hours (Public Works) - (867) 920-5699