(Black Press file photo)

(Black Press file photo)

Open fires allowed again in some Coastal Fire Centre areas starting Oct. 28

Open burning and fireworks within municipal boundaries still subject to local regulation

Open burning activities will again be permitted throughout the Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction starting at noon on Friday, Oct. 28.

Category 2 and Category 3 open fires have been prohibited throughout the Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction since July 15. This prohibition is being allowed to lapse due to current and expected rainfall, along with a return to seasonal temperatures.

The ending of the prohibition applies to all public and private land, unless specified otherwise (such as in a local government bylaw). People are asked to check with local government authorities for any other restrictions before lighting any fire. That means burning and fireworks restrictions in municipalities will remain in place and takes precedent over any decisions coming from the Coastal Fire Centre.

Specifically, this change will allow the following activities:

• “Category 2 open fire” which means an open fire, other than a campfire, that burns material in one pile not exceeding two metres in height and three metres in width, burns material concurrently in two piles each not exceeding two metres in height and three metres in width, or burns stubble or grass over an area that does not exceed 0.2 hectares.

• “Category 3 open fire” which means an open fire that burns material concurrently in 3 or more piles each not exceeding two metres in height and three metres in width, material in one or more piles each exceeding two metres in height or three metres in width, one or more windrows, or stubble or grass over an area exceeding 0.2 ha.

READ MORE: Campfire ban lifted as of Sept. 20 in Parksville fire protection area

Also allowed will be the previously prohibited activities listed below:

• Fireworks, including firecrackers;

• Sky lanterns;

• Binary exploding targets;

• Burn barrels or burn cages of any size or description; and,

• Air curtain burners.

The campfire prohibition within the Coastal Fire Centre was lifted on Sept. 20. This applies to campfires that are a half-metre high by a half-metre wide or smaller, or to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.

Anyone lighting a campfire must maintain a fireguard by removing flammable debris from around the campfire area and have a hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to properly extinguish the fire.

A poster explaining the different categories of open burning is available online: openburningregs_2022update.pdf

The Coastal Fire Centre covers all the area west of the height of land on the Coast Mountain Range from the U.S.-Canada border at Manning Park, including Tweedsmuir South Provincial Park in the north, the Sunshine Coast, the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and Haida Gwaii.

To report a wildfire, call 1-800-663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, go to: http://www.bcwildfire.ca

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