Close call for man after boat catches fire on Georgian Bay

Two people in a canoe went out to save a man after his boat caught fire in Georgian Bay Wednesday.

At 10:32 a.m. members of the Southern Georgian Bay Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) received a 911 call about a vessel on fire between Beausoliel Island and Midland Bay.

Penetanguishene Fire department, Simcoe County Paramedics, Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) and the OPP helicopter also attended to assist.

Further investigation revealed that the 60 year old Penetanguishene man was transporting his boat to be stored for the winter when it caught fire. The male was forced to enter the water but was wearing a floater suit at the time. Two workers at a nearby residence went out in a canoe and an aluminum boat to assist the male to shore.

The boat drifted to a residence on McArthur Drive in Penetanguishene where the fire was extinguished by firefighters. The male was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries but has since been released.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is still under investigation.


Fire started in space below fireplace in Glen Orchard

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department made quick work of a fire that broke out at a residence in the Glen Orchard area Friday night.

At 9:00 p.m., Friday, the Township of Muskoka Lakes Fire Department was dispatched to a report of a structure fire located at 1025 Apian Way Unit 10.

Upon arrival, people outside the residence reported that all parties from inside were out and described flames were coming through the wall and the ceiling of the lower bedroom.

A DSPA5, a portable hand grenade extinguisher, was deployed in the lower bedroom area while awaiting other members of the fire department to arrive.

Within minutes, the flames appeared to be extinguished.

When crews arrive, operations began to locate any hot spots and the seat of the fire. After removal of sections the floor in the master bedroom directly above lower bedroom, there was evidence of smoke was still coming from the fire place which abutted to this area.

The people from the residence stated they were using the fire place at the time. Despite removing all combustibles from within the fireplace, smoke and heat were still emanating from the area. Further investigation revealed that there was an ash collecting trap located at the back of the fireplace which people used to push there ashes into.

Surprisingly, there was no cleanout hatch underneath in order to shovel out the ash which had been pushed into the trap. It appears there is a large void space under the fireplace which people had swept their ashes and unburned small wood particles into.

Using the Thermal Imaging Camera, it indicated the fire was still extremely hot in this void and the smoke was visibly seeped out the cracks from the void. This in turn started the in joist of the jointing master bedroom to catch fire.

The fire is not believed to be at of a suspicious in nature.

Gravenhurst garage fire caused $75,000 in damages

A Gravenhurst firefighter was taken to hospital Wednesday after fighting a blaze that caused $75,000 damage on Canning Road.

At 3:20 p.m., Wednesday, Gravenhurst Fire crews were alerted to a structure fire at 1056 Canning Road. Crews from Stations 1 and 2 responded to the incident and found a garage burning upon their arrival.

Firefighters made quick work of extinguishing the fire and prevented it from spreading to the attached home. Crews conducted extensive overhaul operations that continued until about 9:00 p.m. because of the nature of the contents in the building.

One firefighter was taken to hospital as a result of exertion, and was later released. Damage was contained to the garage and is estimated at $75,000.

The cause is not considered suspicious.

Bracebridge Fire Department holding Open House

Bracebridge’s Fire Department is inviting the public out for a fun, informative evening about fire prevention.

On Wednesday, October 5th at 6:30 p.m. the Bracebridge Fire Department will be hosting an Open House at Station One on Dominion Street to celebrate this year’s Fire Prevention Week.

The Fire Department will be providing the public with a variety of information needed to ensure that Bracebridge families and local businesses remain safe for years to come.

The theme for this year’s Open House is “Don’t Wait, Check the Date”

Bracebridge firefighters will be informing residents to check the date on their smoke/carbon monoxide (CO) alarms and to replace them if required. Manufacturers recommend replacing a smoke alarm every ten (10) years and a CO alarm every seven (7) years. The Fire Department extends the invitation to come out and meet some of the local firefighters, indulge in food and refreshments, and win some great prizes.

Some of the fun activities being offered at the Open House are:

– Complimentary hamburgers, hotdogs;

– A children’s firefighter challenge (including extinguishing a simulated house fire; stop, drop and roll station; a hose carry; and a baby carry);

– How to prepare a home escape plan;

– Various giveaways and prizes;

– Try on fire-fighting gear and see the equipment used in emergencies;

– And don’t forget about meeting the department’s mascot “SPARKY the fire dog”.

“We look forward to spreading the fire safety message in a fun and memorable way,” says Fire Prevention Officer Mike Peake.

Every home in Ontario must have a working smoke alarm on every storey and outside all sleeping areas. In addition each home must have a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm outside sleeping areas. It is strongly recommended that additional CO alarms be placed in areas where fuel burning appliances are located, the distance from the appliances should be determined by the manual of the detector.

For more information about this informative event, email Peake at or call the Fire Department at 705-645-8258.

(Photo via Town of Bracebridge)

$8,000 damage in Mortimer’s Point Road basement fire

Today (Aug 25th) at 8:14am the Muskoka Lakes Fire Department was dispatched to 1919 Mortimer’s Point Road Unit 1 for a reported structure fire.

The owners of the home notice smoke from the fire and called 911.

Fire crews from Station 6 – Port Carling, and Station 1 – Foot’s Bay/Glen Orchard responded. Upon arrival, the fire was burning in the basement.

The basement was thick with smoke and flames were moving up the outside wall. A fire extinguisher was used on the fire as the firefighters were preparing the hose line. The fire was brought under control quickly.

Fire that had spread into the wall was quickly found and extinguished with the aid of Thermal Imaging Camera. The actions of the firefighters saved the significant loss of a home for the long-time residents. There were no injuries.

Electrical issues within the wall caused the fire. The damage estimation is $8,000.

Fire causes $250,000 in damages to Huntsville laundry facility

Extensive damage to a Huntsville laundry facility early this morning after flames broke out around 1am.

The Huntsville/Lake of Bays Fire Department responded to the alarm call on Main St. East and upon arrival, crews encountered light smoke inside a commercial occupancy and discovered a working fire in the laundry facility located below.

Nearby residential occupancies were evacuated and crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire.

Some other areas of the building suffered some smoke damage and occupants in 2 residential units were not able to return to their homes.

No injuries were reported and damage is estimated at $250,000 to the laundry facility.

The cause is still under investigation.

Major fire averted at Huckleberry Rock in Milford Bay

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department says a major fire was averted today at the base of Huckleberry Rock in Milford Bay.

Firefighters from Milford Bay and Port Carling responded to the call which was about a reported brush fire.

With fears of a repeat blaze happening at the location like the one that occurred back in 2012, the department was relieved to find only a small fire which was quickly brought under control. Due to the quick actions of those who first noticed the flames and the firefighter response, a major fire was averted.

All residents and visitors are reminded that during these extreme conditions there is a complete burning ban. This ban is in effect throughout the whole of Muskoka. What this means is that there are no fires permitted at any time, no fireworks permitted & no outdoor open flames permitted.

The likelihood of fire spread is extremely likely as noted by this recent fire and the Muskoka Lakes Fire Department is taking a zero tolerance approach to offences.

Offenders will be subject to a fine of up to $300.00, and/or a fee for service ($125/hour for each apparatus + firefighter wages), and/or a summons to appear in court.

(Photo via the Muskoka Lakes Fire Department)

Bush fire on Luckey Road caused by campfire during ban

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department was called yet again this week to respond to a bush fire, this time on Luckey Road.

Upon arrival today, firefighters had to traverse rough terrain to reach a peninsula on a small lake.

Once at the fire, crews were quick to bring the flames under control.

Firefighters say it was evident the area had been used as a campsite as there were remnants of a campfire there.

It is unknown when this campfire was used last, but the department says it was clearly the source of the fire.

All residents and visitors to the district are reminded that during these extreme conditions there is a complete burning ban. This ban is throughout the whole of Muskoka.

What this means is that there are no fires permitted at any time, no fireworks permitted, no outdoor open flames permitted.

The likelihood of fire spread is extremely likely now as noted by this recent fire.

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department is taking a zero tolerance approach to offences.

Offenders will be subject to a fine of up to $300.00 and/or a fee for service ($125/hour for each apparatus + firefighter wages), and/or summons to appear in court.

Picture courtesy of Ron Brent.

Windsor Drive cottage fire damages could be as high as $770,000

Updated information:

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department says the estimated property loss in yesterday’s Windsor Drive cottage fire is between $370,000 and $570,000 for the structure and $200,000 for the content

The fire was started as a result of a campfire that was last used on Sunday, two days earlier.

The fire quickly spread across the land and caught the cottage on fire. This is evidence of the dry conditions throughout the area and the reasoning for the Fire Danger Rating to be at “Extreme”.

While fighting this fire, embers travelled some distance. A secondary bush fire had to be extinguished across the road from the subject property as well as various other spot fires multiple cottages away.

All residents and visitors are reminded that during these “Extreme” conditions there is a complete burning ban.

What this means is that there are NO fires permitted at any time, NO fireworks permitted, No outdoor open flames permitted.

The likelyhood of fire spread is extremly likely as noted by this recent fire.

The Muskoka Lakes Fire Department is taking a zero tolerance approach to offences. Offenders will be subject to a fine of up to $300.00, and/or a fee for service ($125/hour for each apparatus + firefighter wages), and/or summons to appear in court.


At 2pm Tuesday the Muskoka Lakes Fire Department were called to a reported grass fire at 1046 Windsor Drive in Muskoka Lakes Township.

Firefighters from Station 3 – Bala, Station 4 – Torrance/Walker’s Point, and Station 1 – Foot’s Bay/Glen Orchard all responded to the call.

Upon arrival it was noted that the fire was a structure which was fully involved. Fire crews concentrated their initial efforts on protecting the exposures. The blaze was contained to the 1046 Windsor Drive structure and surrounding bush line.

No persons were reported at the cottage. The fire remains under investigation and the dollar loss is pending.

Neighbours and firefighters help each other fight blaze

Neighbours and firefighters helped stop the spread of flames early this morning at a Breezy Point Road residence.

At 1:54am, the Township of Muskoka Lakes Fire Department were dispatched to a brush fire and possibly a structure fire located at 1305 Breezy Point Road, in the Walker’s Point area.


Upon arrival, firefighters say they were grateful no structure had become involved as neighbours had brought over their personal portable water pumps and hoses and were able to control the flames in order to stop it from reaching any buildings.

The fire department took over the extinguishment operations and were assisted by their Marine Unit’s portable pump and hoses. It took 3 hours to ensure hot spots were extinguished as the fire had begun to tunnel under the surface vegetation.

Damage was limited to the forest’s surface vegetation to an area approximately 60’ X 200 ‘(18m X 66m).

Upon investigation, it was revealed the fire had begun at the resident’s stone surrounded fire pit.

The residents stated they had a fire earlier that night and believed it was extinguished when they went inside a half hour prior to the call. The resident became aware of the situation when the neighbours had alerted him.

The resident later stated: “I honestly thought it would never happen to me.”

In total, seven (7) pieces of Fire Department Apparatus were dispatched with 15 firefighters. There were no injuries.

“You can surely tell it is dry out there when fires are beginning in the middle of the night,” stated Deputy Fire Chief Baranik.

The current Fire Rating in the Township of Muskoka Lakes is at High which still allows for open air burning, but as dry as it is, extreme diligence must be used and one needs to ensure they comply with all conditions of the burning by-law which includes constant supervision of the fire until it is completely extinguished.


$7.5 million for new Fire/Ambulance base in Bracebridge

The District of Muskoka could soon sign a deal with Greystone Project Management Inc. for the design and construction of an expensive new Bracebridge Fire Station and District Ambulance Base.

Outlined in a new report that’s to go before District councillors today, the project is a partnership between Muskoka and the Town of Bracebridge to co-develop the property at 225 Taylor Road in Bracebridge for a new ambulance base and fire station, the cost of which is currently pegged at $7, 535,034.


The report shows Greystone’s proposal price for the project is $6,210,000 worth of the total expenditure.

Once a contract is signed, the development of final project design and contract execution would start in August, while construction would start in October and wrap up sometime in October 2017. Councillors could approve the initial recommendation to enter into a contract with Greystone today.

Charges laid after illegal garbage burning

Charges have been laid following an illegal burn in Muskoka Lakes.

At 10:45 Thursday morning, Muskoka Lakes Fire Department Station #6-Port Carling responded to a report of a large column of black smoke in the air as a result of a pile of garbage on fire.

Station #6 firefighters put the blaze out quickly – the investigation found that the pile contained plastics, rubber tires, metal, and other prohibited items being burnt.

When crews arrived the fire was found to be unsupervised by anyone on the property and as a result charges were laid.

Muskoka Lakes Fire Chief Richard Hayes wants to remind residence that any day time burning is banned between April 1st and October 31, unless you have a day time burning permit.

Permits can be obtained at the Township Office in Port Carling at 1 Bailey St.

If you are going to have a fire, whether during the day time with a permit or two hours before sunset it must be clean burning, supervised at all times, and have a good supply of extinguishing agent available to put the fire out.

Prior to starting to burn, please check the Fire Rating by checking the Township web page or calling 1 877 847 1577.