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B.C. Wildfire Service worried campfire ban being ignored on coast

Vancouver Sun logo Vancouver Sun 2017-07-20 Scott Brown
071717-no_object-236129085-Wildfires_BC_20170716-W.jpg:   © HO  

The B.C. Wildfire Service says too many people living within the Coastal Fire Centre are ignoring the province-wide open burning prohibition.

Between July 15 and 17, more than 50 illegal campfires were reported to the Coastal Fire Centre.  

“In light of these reports, enforcement will be stepped up with increased patrols by both the Compliance and Enforcement Branch and the Conservation Officers Service. Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers are also authorized to issue violation tickets under the Wildfire Act and Wildfire Regulation,” the B.C. Wildfire Service said in a release.

As of Tuesday. there were 140 fires burning across the province. In all, there have been 674 fires this year, which has burned about 3,530 square kilometres.

Enforcement officers will be patrolling areas with a history of open burn violations to hand out to tickets to campfire scofflaws.  

A ticket for “lighting, fuelling or use of fire against regulations” carries a fine of $1,150 and applies to every person in the vicinity of the fire.

Where open fires are prohibited, the following activities are also prohibited:

• Open fires of woody debris in outdoor stoves
• Tiki torches, fireworks, firecrackers, sky lanterns, burning barrels or burning cages of any size or description
• The use of binary exploding targets (e.g. for rifle target practice)

This open-burning ban will remain in effect until Oct. 21 or until the public is otherwise notified.

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