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A look at some high-profile fatal fires on reserves in Canada

There are renewed calls to better protect First Nations from house fires after nine people perished in a blaze on the Pikangikum First Nation in northern Ontario this week. Here's a look at some other high-profile deadly fires on reserves:

February 2009: Hope Richard, 9, dies when the house she shares with 12 other people catches fire in Sandy Bay, Man.

May 2009: Tristan Marcus Taylor-Mousseau, 5, dies in a house fire in Sandy Bay, Man. There were 12 people living in the house at the time.

January 2010: Edward Redhead, 11, dies in a house fire in Shamattawa, Man. No one could find the fire chief and no one realized the boy was missing until several days later.

January 2011: Errabella Harper, 2 1/2 months, dies in a house fire in St. Theresa Point, Man. The community’s fire truck was broken with no fire hoses and no one knew where the keys were.

January 2011: Daphne Benjoe, 41, dies in a house fire on the Roseau River reserve in Manitoba. Firefighters were left without water to battle the blaze, because the community’s fire hydrants were frozen, not having had their annual maintenance the previous year.

March 2011: Demus James, 73, and his grandchildren Throne Kirkness, 2, and Kayleigh Okemow, 3, die in a fire in God’s Lake Narrows, Man. The community didn’t have a fire truck and tried to battle the flames with two water trucks.

March 2013: A 14-year-old boy and a three-year-old child are orphaned after a house fire kills their parents on the Wasagamack reserve in Manitoba. The reserve didn’t have a fire dispatch service because of funding cuts.

February 2015: Harley Cheenanow, 2, and his 18-month-old sister Haley are killed in a house fire on the Makwa Sahgaiehcan reserve in Saskatchewan. The reserve had a working fire truck, but had never used it, because it wasn't properly equipped and no one was trained. The band had hired the volunteer fire department in a neighbouring village of Loon Lake, but was cut off services. The village said the band had stopped paying its bills.

The Canadian Press

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