Vancouver Island under burn ban starting May 18

Small campfires still allowed under Cat. 2 open fire prohibition

Small campfires are still allowed, but other open burns will be prohibited on most of Vancouver Island beginning at noon on Friday, May 18, 2018, The BC Wildfire Service reported Thursday morning.

All Category 2 open burns will be prohibited throughout the Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction, with the exception of the Haida Gwaii Natural Resource District and the “Fog Zone,” a two-km strip of coastline along the west coast and the northern tip of Vancouver Island.

The prohibition is intended to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety, the BC Wildfire Service stated in a written release. It will remain in effect until Oct. 20, 2018, or until the public is otherwise notified.

A map of the affected area is available at http://ow.ly/CPeC30k2k0J

These prohibitions apply to all public and private land unless specified otherwise, for example in a local government bylaw. Please check with local government authorities for any other restrictions before lighting any fire.

Specifically, the Category 2 prohibition applies to:

• The burning of any material (piled or unpiled) smaller than two metres high and three metres wide;

• The burning of stubble or grass fires over an area less than 2,000 square metres;

• The use of fireworks, firecrackers, sky lanterns, burning barrels or burning cages of any size or description; and

• The use of binary exploding targets (e.g., for rifle target practice).

This prohibition does not ban campfires that are smaller than a half-metre high by a half-metre wide, or apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes. A poster explaining the different categories of open burning is available online: http://ow.ly/znny309kJv5

People lighting a campfire must maintain a fireguard by removing flammable debris from around the campfire site and they must have a hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to properly extinguish the fire, the Coastal Fire Centre reported. They also must ensure that the campfire is completely extinguished and the ashes are cold to the touch before leaving the area for any length of time.

Anyone lighting larger fires (Category 3 fires) or more than two fires of any size must comply with open burning regulations and must first obtain a burn registration number by calling 1-888-797-1717. They must also check venting conditions before lighting a Category 3 fire. If venting conditions in the area are rated “poor” or “fair,” open burning is restricted. The venting index can be obtained by calling 1-888-281-2992.

Anyone who lights, fuels or uses an open fire when a fire prohibition is in place or fails to comply with an open fire prohibition may be issued a ticket for $1,150 or, if convicted in court, be 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 subject to a penalty of up to $100,000 and 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 to: www.bcwildfire.ca.

— News staff/BC Wildfire Service release

Just Posted

Third time’s not a charm for Oak Bay thief

Police briefs: Repeat thefts, stolen scooter, walking sticks misplaced

Lawyer for Victoria homeless camp questions offer by Saanich Police

John Heaney says breaking up camp puts people at risk because it seperates them from support

Former employee at B.C.’s oldest bakery says staff got no notice of closure

Willie’s Bakery staffer didn’t receive any severance

Elderly man in hospital after struck by car in Oak Bay

The incident happened Monday evening on Cadboro Bay Road

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps calls for audit on Johnson Street Bridge project

The bridge took three years and $40 million more than initially expected

Musicians take note at Victoria music industry conference

Rifflandia Gathering brings together emerging artists and industry professionals

Public to comment on Nigel Valley development in Saanich

Saanich residents will have their say today about a new housing development… Continue reading

EDITORIAL: Ban on plastic bags reflects new reality

The plastic bag ban Victoria introduced in July of this year is… Continue reading

B.C. RCMP turn to Const. Scarecrow to shock speeders into slowing down

New addition will watch over drivers from a Coquitlam median for first-of-its-kind pilot in Canada

Cyclists finish North America trip to highlight Ukraine struggle

The 10,000 bike ride raised over $10,000 for victims of the war in Ukraine.

21 new paramedics promised for B.C. Interior

A total of 18 new full-time paramedics will be hired for Kamloops and three are being hired for Chase.

Federal stats show slight increase in irregular migrant claims in August

113 extra people tried to cross the Canadian border last month

Work begins to remove cargo from grounded Haida Gwaii barge and fishing lodge

Westcoast Resorts’ Hippa Lodge broke from its moorings and ran aground early this month

Most Read