Grass fires, fireworks, burning barrels and more are prohibited in most populated areas of the Kamloops Fire Centre starting May 15.
A release from the Kamloops Fire Centre stated effective on Tuesday, May 15 at noon the size of open fires will be restricted at elevations below 1,200 metres to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect the public. For a map of areas go here.
Anyone conducting Category 2 or Category 3 burns in those areas must have them extinguished by that time. The prohibition remains in effect until Oct. 15 or until further notice.
Category two fire: one to two concurrently burning piles smaller than two metres by three metres wide; stubble or grass burning over an area less than 0.2 hectares
Category three fire: larger than two metres high by three metres wide; three or more concurrently burning piles smaller than two metres high by three metres wide, one ore more burning windrows, stubble or grass burning over an area greater than 0.2 acres
Additional prohibited activities at elevations below 1,200 metres include:
– burning of more than two open fires of any size at the same time
– stubble or grass fires of any size over any area
– the use of fireworks, sky lanterns, tiki torches (and similar kinds of torches), or burning barrels and cages of any size or description
– the use of binary exploding targets.
Campfires half-metre by a half-metre (or smaller), cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes are not banned.
The prohibition covers all B.C. parks, Crown lands and private lands in the Kamloops Fire Centre, but it does not apply within the boundaries of a local government that has forest fire protection bylaws in place and is serviced by a fire department. Before lighting any fire, residents should check with local government authorities for any other restrictions.
For areas where Category 2 or Category 3 burns are still allowed, always check the venting conditions before conducting an open burn. If venting conditions are rated “poor” or “fair”, open burning is restricted. The venting index can be found here.
The fine is $1,150 for being caught in contravention of an open burning prohibition. In addition the person may have to pay an administrative penalty of $10,000 or, if convicted in court, fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.
To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free, or *5555 on a cellphone. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, go here.