BC Wildfire dashboard shows the difference between the Coastal Fire Centre and the rest of the province in terms of wildfire activity. (Supplied by BC Wildfire)
So far at least, we’ve dodged the wildfire bullet in the Coastal Fire Centre.
There are just five active fires burning in the region, that includes Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.
Coastal Fire Centre information assistant, Gordon Robinson, says despite the fire danger rating sitting at either high or extreme, people are doing their part.
“We have only had 145 hectares burned, compared to an average year, it would be around 2,500,” Robinson said.
“So there have been quite a few fires but they haven’t been very big and I want to thank everybody for being really vigilant and reporting smoke or violations when they see them at the *5555 number. It really helps our crews get to fires quickly and contain them before they grow.”
Robinson says despite extreme drought and hot temperatures Mother Nature is also helping out.
“We’ve had relatively little lightning on the coast. Of those 113 fires that we’ve had this year, only seven of them have been lightning-caused so, part of it is that we’ve been lucky with the weather to not have more lightning starts. So almost all of the ones we’ve had so far have been human-caused.”
It’s a whole different story across the rest of the province. As of this morning, there are 307 active first burning in B.C., including 23 that started in just the past two days.
Of those, 98 are in the Kamloops Fire Centre.
Robinson said they are continuing to support the other fire centres.
“We’re continuing to send crews and rotate them back here so they can recover,” he said. “We will continue doing that while maintaining sufficient resources for the Coastal Fire Centre.”
There are no fires of note on the island and Sunshine Coast, however, the Daniels River fire 50 kilometres north of Powell River, is considered under control and remains at 2.5 hectares.
To keep fires down, and keep resources available to places where they are needed most, Robinson is urging everyone to stay the course.
“The weather we’ve had so far, with how dry and how hot it’s been, we’re at a much more advanced stage of dryness in the forest and the fire danger, and every human caused fire is preventable, and the way things are in the rest of the province and how dry things are here, we really don’t want to see any more human-caused fires,” he said.
“So we do have that full prohibition on campfires (and) Category 2 and 3 (open burning), and I want to urge people to consider all their activities that they are doing outdoors and consider if there is any potential to start a fire and take appropriate action to mitigate that risk.”