FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The BC Wildfire Service says that all open burning, including campfires, will be prohibited across Northeast B.C. this weekend.
Fire Information Officer Amanda Reynolds with the Prince George Fire Centre said that the ban on campfires, Category 2, and Category 3 open fires will be going into effect at noon Pacific time on Saturday, Aug. 18th.
The existing prohibition on all open burning in other parts of the Prince George Fire will now be expanded to include the Peace and the Fort Nelson Forest Districts.
In addition to campfires and larger open fires, the ban also appliues to the use of: stoves and other portable campfire apparatuses that are not CSA-approved or ULC-approved, outdoor stoves that burn woody debris, tiki torches, fireworks, firecrackers, sky lanterns, burning barrels and burning cages, or binary exploding targets for rifle target practice.
The prohibition does not apply to CSA-rated or ULC-rated cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, as long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres.
Reynolds said in a release that the prohibition is being implemented to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety due to current and forecasted weather conditions, high fire-danger ratings and the number of fires that the BC Wildfire Service is currently responding to in the rest of the province.
This prohibition applies to all public and private land within the Prince George Fire Centre’s jurisdiction covered by this prohibition, unless specified by a local government authority.
Anyone found in contravention of an open burning prohibition may be issued a violation ticket for $1,150, required 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 or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.