DENMAN ISLAND, B.C- Residents of Denman Island should use extra caution against fires this week.
The fire risk on the island has been elevated to the extreme for the past four days, according to Don Luckett, the community’s fire chief. Luckett stated that after three days of extreme conditions, any high risk activities are prohibited.
Four rules have been published on the fire departments web page. They include a complete fire ban, restricting fires of any kind, as well as forbidding smoking in or close to the woods.
“If the activity you are considering creates an ignition source or any kind of a spark……please don’t do it,” states the page.
This includes the use of chainsaws.
“It looks like this could go for a few weeks,” said Luckett.
“Your guess is as good as mine, it depends on the weather, but it doesn’t look like there’s a break in the weather. As long as it stays extreme, these bans will be in place.”
Luckett considered a significant fire last week a “good scare” for the island, while praising the work of his firefighters and the BC Wildfire Service.
“We were just lucky, we were able to knock it down quickly,” said Luckett.
“It was into the trees, it was candling, and it was a tricky one to deal with. I think it got their attention.”
While the conditions persist, Luckett is asking residents to “just use common sense”.
“It’s extremely dry out there, you can hear it when you walk in the forest,” said Luckett.
“Don’t smoke. Any fire here will put property and lives at risk.”
Hornby Island also implemented similar rules. A notice posted on their fire department’s website is included in full below:
“Effective noon on July 30 we are implementing restrictions on high risk activities. These activities include chainsaw usage, lawn mowing, brush cutting with metal blades, and land clearing. Nylon string weed trimmers are allowed as they are unlikely to create a spark.
For more information on which activities are allowed and which are restricted please refer to the Wildfire BC page.
If you witness someone engaging in one of the risky activities you can call the Fire Patrol cell phone at 250.703.1792 or the Fire Hall at 250.335.2611. If you choose to inform the operator yourself please be kind. They may not be aware of the restrictions. Entering into a confrontation benefits no one.”