By Mike Weland
Thanks to the epic exertions of firefighters on the ground and the daring of a helicopter crew flying in water drops, a small fire on the steep and barely accessible west side of the Moyie River beneath the Moyie River Bridge is under control.
The fire, possibly started by fireworks, was reported at about 10:22 a.m. today, and Moyie Springs Fire Chief Ken English was one of the first to get eyes on, calling it a small fire in the rocks in rugged terrain. As firefighters worked to get a hose to the blaze, a helicopter arrived and flew beneath the bridge to deliver multiple small water drops to keep the fire confined and away from the homes on the rim.
As darkness set in, ground crews, able to contain the blaze but not extinguish it, were able to set sprinklers to run through the night to soak the area before expected high winds arrive Monday morning.
Sadly, firefighters working the blaze had to call law enforcement at least twice as people climbed on the catwalk beneath the Moyie River Bridge, not merely trespassing to get a better view, but tossing items down toward where the firefighters were working. Fortunately, none were hit.