A discarded cigarette in a drive through in Langford caused cedar hedges to ignite in what could have been a dangerous fire. (Photo courtesy of Langford Fire Rescue)

Heat wave also brings spike in preventable fires

Langford Fire Rescue reminds residents to be cautious as discarded cigarettes cause three fires

The recent heat wave has Langford Fire Rescue reminding residents to carefully dispose of cigarette butts and be cautious of other activities that could lead to preventable fires.

“We had such a bad year last year and the predictions are for a similar summer,” said Lance Caven, Assistant Fire Chief of fire prevention. “We could have a significant number of fires, as we did last year, if people aren’t careful.”

With the hot weather expected to last through the Victoria Day long weekend, the local department is asking residents to stop tossing their cigarette butts out windows or into garden beds and planters after a spike in preventable fires last week.

“We just want to get the word out early,” Caven said, adding the wind and heat will dry out flower beds and grass that have been flourishing through the wet winter.

Langford Fire Rescue responded to three fires last week involving discarded cigarettes that ignited bark mulch. One of those fires was next to a drive-through and it ignited cedar hedges in the garden bed. Caven noted if those bushes had been situated differently it would have been much worse. He added he was surprised this week to see the large number of cigarette butts along another drive-through in the city.

Caven noted it’s also an unnecessary strain on local resources that need to be focusing on fires and emergencies that are not preventable.

While there aren’t any campfire bans in place yet, Caven added it’s also important for residents to be cautious of any potential for wild or other preventable fires.

“Until there’s a ban we want people to be really careful … just use caution with whatever you’re doing.”

Whether that’s being mindful of a hot exhaust on a vehicle, the potential for sparks or embers from using power tools in the yard or a campfire that hasn’t been extinguished but is left unattended, he added it’s important to have a water source or an extinguisher close by. “Just think about the potential of what you’re doing,” he said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

editor@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Viral video shows Sooke resident calling out illegal crab fishers

The video shows a man and woman with 12 undersized crabs in Sooke

Marijuana-related business requires rezoning in Oak Bay

Council plans to add cannabis laws to priorities list

Island Corridor Foundation optimistic about restoring rail service

If green-lighted, first priority would be Langford to Victoria route

Esquimalt senior’s complex getting redeveloped

The Esquimalt Lions Lodge is one of the projects to receive funding for affordable housing

Firefighters rescue horse stuck in Saanich mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Dog psychic can help Vancouver Islanders better connect with their pets

Michele Wonnacott hosts one-day seminar in Nanaimo on Saturday, Nov. 17

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

Cowichan school district defends lack of notice to parents following elementary student arrest

Officials with School District 79 stand by their decision not to send out an alert.

Older B.C. drivers subsidizing younger ones, study finds

ICBC protects higher-risk drivers, pays for testing costs

Canadians more prepared for weather disaster than financial one: poll

RBC recommends people check their bank app as often as the weather app

Most Read