Info Bulletin: Open Fire Prohibitions to be Lifted Across NW Fire Centre
For Immediate Release: Sept. 1, 2021
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
BC Wildfire Service
SMITHERS – Effective at 12:00 noon, Pacific Daylight Time on Tuesday, September 07, 2021, Category 2 and Category 3 open fires will be permitted throughout the Northwest and Prince George Fire Centres. Fireworks, firecrackers and sky lanterns will also be permitted.
A map of the Northwest Fire Centre (NWFC) is available online: BC Wildfire Service map of regional boundaries.
These activities have been prohibited since the end of June due to prolonged hot and dry weather conditions present at the time. This prohibition was also initiated to protect the health and safety of the public and BC Wildfire Service staff. With recent precipitation and cooler temperatures the wildfire risk has been greatly reduced thereby allowing senior staff at the NWFC to rescind Category 2 and 3 open fires.
The public is strongly encouraged to exercise caution with any outdoor burning and campfire use. It is the responsibility of the individual to ensure that burning is done in a safe and responsible manner in accordance with regulations. Before lighting any fire, check with local government authorities to see if any local burning restrictions are in place.
Category 2 open fire:
Category 2 open fires will be permitted throughout the Northwest and Prince George Fire Centres. Category 2 fires include:
one or two concurrently burning piles no larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
stubble or grass burning over an area of less than 0.2 hectares in size
Reminders about Category 2 open fire:
Anyone planning to conduct Category 2 open burning should always check the Ventilation Index, follow the Open Burning Smoke Control Regulations and practice safe burning. Create a fireguard around the planned fire site by clearing away twigs, grass, leaves and other combustible material. Have an adequate source of pressurized water on hand. Never leave a fire unattended and make sure the fire is fully extinguished with ashes cold to the touch before leaving the area for any length of time.
More information on Category 2 open fire safety: http://ow.ly/qLxI50A9qTN
Category 3 open fire:
Category 3 open fires will be permitted throughout the Northwest and Prince George Fire Centres. Category 3 fires include:
any fire larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
three or more concurrently burning piles each no larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
the burning of stubble or grass over an area greater than 0.2 hectares; and
the burning of one or more windrows.
Anyone wishing to light a Category 3 open fire must obtain a burn registration number ahead of time by calling 1-888-797-1717. A burn registration number is not required to light a Category 2 open fire.
Reminders about Category 3 open burning:
All Category 3 open fires must comply with the Environmental Management Act and the Open Burning Smoke Control Regulations. This requires individuals to check local venting conditions prior to lighting a fire and to understand all other obligations associated with these regulations.
A poster explaining the different categories of open burning and applicable regulations is available online: www.gov.bc.ca/openfireregs.
To report a wildfire or an open burning violation, call *5555 on a cell phone or 1-800-663-5555 toll-free. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit www.bcwildfire.ca
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