Steve Balsom, director of legislation and compliance with the Department of Natural Resources, acting as provincial fire duty officer, said three crews of about 15 people in total were still on the ground fighting the fire and watching for hot spots. They were being assisted by a helicopter, which could still be observed dumping bucket after bucket of water on the area.
“Today (Saturday) it’s overcast and calm, so they’ve got good conditions,” said Balsom.
The conditions were certainly in contrast to Friday, when during the height of the fire, two water bombers and a helicopter provided support to crews on the ground.
The fire was still listed as out of control at about 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Balsom said things were pretty tense at times as the fire came within five and half kilometres of Stephenville Crossing.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers from Stephenville evacuated cabins and campers in the area shortly after the fire started.
But things changed for the better overnight.
“I think the rain last night definitely helped to knock it down,” said Balsom.
Though, early Saturday afternoon Balsom said there was no report of any rain in the area at that time.
Balsom said the latest estimate on the area affected is about 350 hectares. He said about a third of that is bog and two thirds is forest and scrub.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Stephenville said the cause of the fire has not been determined.