Fires burning near Watson Lake and Keno, Yukon

A severe lightning storm peppered the Yukon with close to 1,000 lightning strikes Friday, sparking seven new forest fires.

Four are close to communities. A 90 hectare fire is burning near the Liard River six kilometres from Watson Lake, and is being fought with airtankers and firefighters on the ground.

Yukon Wildland Fire Management says residents of Keno have been notified of a 10 hectare fire 1.5 kilometres from their community. No evacuations are required yet. The fire continues to be fought today.

Two fires started in the Dawson district on Friday, one north of Henderson Corner and the other near Rock Creek, seven kilometres from the airport. Helicopters were dumping buckets of water on both those fires Friday night.

The other three new fires were in the Carmacks and Mayo districts. There have been 29 fires in Yukon so far this season.

Twenty-one firefighters from B.C. arrived in the Yukon last night. Nine have been sent to the Watson Lake area. The rest will be sent north to deal with fires in the Dawson, Mayo and Carmacks area.

Anyone who sees a wildfire is asked to report it immediately to 1-888-798-FIRE (3473).

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