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Fire prohibitions to start in Kamloops Fire Centre

Category 2 open fires will be banned at 12 p.m. Friday, May 17
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A map of the Kamloops Fire Centre, where a ban on Category 2 open fires will be in place at 12 p.m. Friday, May 17. (BC Wildfire Service photo)

Fire prohibitions are set to start in the Kamloops Fire Centre amid dry conditions.

Effective at 12 p.m. on Friday, May 17, Category 2 open fires as well as other equipment and activities will be prohibited throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre. This is in addition to a ban on Category 3 open fires that is already in place.

BC Wildfire Service and the Ministry of Forests is activating the fire ban to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety, according to a media release issued Tuesday, May 14.

The prohibition will remain in effect until 12 p.m. on Oct. 11, or until the order is rescinded. Anyone with Category 2 open fires within the Kamloops Fire Centre’s jurisdiction will have to extinguish those fires by the 12 p.m. May 17 deadline.

A map of the affected area can be viewed at the top of this story.

The prohibition relates to the following activities:

A Category 2 open fire is a fire (other than a Category 1 fire) that:

• burns material in one pile not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width;

• burns material concurrently in two piles each not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width, or;

• burns stubble or grass over an area that does not exceed 0.2 ha.

A Category 3 open fire means an open fire that:

• burns material concurrently in three or more piles each not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width;

• burns material in one or more piles each exceeding 2 m in height or 3 m in width;

• burns one or more windrows, each not exceeding 200 m in length or 15 m in width;

• burns stubble or grass over an area exceeding 0.2 hectares.

Also prohibited are the activities listed below:

• Fireworks;

• Sky Lanterns;

• Binary Exploding Targets;

• Air Curtain Burners; and,

• Burn Barrels or Burn Cages of any size or description, except when used for a Category 1 campfire as defined by the Wildfire Regulation.

The prohibitions apply to all public and private land within the Kamloops Fire Centre, unless specified otherwise in an enactment such as a local government bylaw.

Before lighting any fire, people are advised to check with their local government authorities to see if any other burning restrictions are in place.

Anyone found breaking the open burning prohibition could be slapped with a ticket for $1,150, or be required to pay an administrative penalty of up to $10,000 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 ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

The prohibition does not ban Category 1 campfires that are a half-metre high by a half-metre wide or smaller. It also does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.

More information on the types of open burning can be found here.

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone. For up-to-date information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, call 1-888-3-FOREST or visit bcwildfire.ca.

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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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