PHOTO BY MANITOBA HYDRO
Manitoba Hydro is shipping two large industrial generators by rail to Pukatawagan to allow residents to return home safely as work to replace about 80 fire damaged poles begins. Approximately 2 thousand residents were ordered to leave July 14th when a wildfire threatened the community.
Manitoba Hydro’s Director of Rural Operations Cyril Patterson says they were lucky the fire didn’t damage the rail line as the size and weight of the generators they need to bring into the community mean rail is the only way to get them there. The generators are currently en route from Alberta. He notes the steep cliffs, marsh and wood poles to be set into rock makes restoration of power to Pukatawagan challenging. Under current plans the earliest residents may begin returning home is the second week of August.