The brush fire at Shawanaga First Nation Tuesday showed how communities come together in times of crisis.
The residents of the small community, with a population under 200 people, worked together to make sure everyone got out within 45 minutes once local officials made the call to evacuate.
People drove their neighbours, scoured the community for wandering animals, and helped authorities go door to door to ensure houses were empty.
Staff who’d started cooking for firefighters quickly changed tacttics and started preparing a feast to feed everyone lunch.
The residents of Shawanaga were taken to Wasauksing, where the community complex was prepared for the influx and arrangements made for everyone to have a safe place to spend the night.
All the while the fire burned and area volunteer firefighters were joined by the provincial forces to knock it down. Not only were there area tanker trucks shuttling water, but Week’s Construction and Adams’ Bros. sent their water trucks as well.
Emergencies are never wanted, but are often planned for. It’s nice to see that when the emergency struck the plan was carried out smoothly and everyone in the village can return to their homes with a story to tell.
We offer, on behalf of all those affected, a community-wide thank you to the volunteer firefighters from Shawanaga, Wasauksing, Pointe au Baril and Carling, to the province, to both the contractors and to the community for a job well done.