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Musings from your local reporter

 

As I was driving back into the Pass after spending the weekend in Lethbridge, I could barely see 20 feet in front of me.
Now, that’s something you would usually come to expect when driving in southern Alberta in the winter but not something you’d expect when driving somewhere in the summer.
The low visibility this trip was all due to forest fire smoke.
The hot dry weather can be enjoyable for certain amounts of time in the summer because it allows for everyone to get outside, enjoy some sun and maybe cool off in one of the local lakes.
When it lasts as long as it has so far this summer, we get nailed for it in the way of fires.
There have been multiple different fires igniting all over BC and Alberta due to the extremely hot and dry weather we’ve experienced so far this summer.
With that comes heavy amounts of smoke, which make not only enjoying the outdoors difficult but it just makes each day harder to get through if you’re inhaling smoke all day.
It’s not an enjoyable experience for anyone.
Up until later last week, southern Alberta had managed to avoid the heavy smoke cover thanks to the wind blowing in the right direction.
With the shift in wind, Alberta has now been blanketed with smoke.
While we don’t enjoy it, the smoke can also serve as a reminder for us to be extra cautious.
Whether it’s a cigarette butt that someone throws out the window, or thinking it’s still okay to have a fire in the backyard, the heavy layers of smoke remind us that if we don’t want to have it here all summer, we need to be smart and make sure we’re doing everything we can to lessen the chances of another fire starting in our community.
There’s another side of the equation to all of this as well.
That’s the firefighters.
There are men and women who spend their entire summers fighting wildfires around Canada and do everything they can to ensure that as little damage as possible is done to communities across the country.
I couldn’t imagine what they face on a day-to-day basis fighting fire after fire after fire.
It takes an incredible amount of strength and courage to fight fires day in day out for multiple months.
Let’s ensure we’re doing what we can to make their jobs a little easier and in doing so, make sure our community stays it’s beautiful self.