Fire threatens northern community of Stanley Mission

Stanley Mission is in a declared state of emergency tonight, due to two blazes in the area.

Flames come within meters of local gas bar

Two forest fires burned near the community of Stanley Mission on Thursday (Karen Charles)

Stanley Mission is in a declared state of emergency tonight due to two blazes in the area.

One is across the bay, while the other came within meters of the local gas bar, according to a band official.

"Fortunately for us we had a tree standing in the path so that kind of slowed it down and La Ronge fire control were on it pretty fast here," Gordon Hardlotte, director of operations with the Lac La Ronge Indian Band. "So we got water bombers and choppers on the scene right now."  

The province's environment ministry says the fires were reported around 2:30 p.m. CST. Air tankers and ground crews are tackling the one closest to the community.

Roughly 200 children, seniors and chronically ill people are being sent to La Ronge in a voluntary evacuation, Hardlotte said. Some will stay at the La Ronge Motor Inn, others at the Jonas Roberts Memorial Centre.

"The big worry right now is when the wind dies down all the smoke is going to get into the community," Hardlotte added.