Effective at noon on Wednesday, May 27, 2015, Category 2
open fires will be prohibited in the Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction
to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety.

This prohibition will remain in effect until Oct. 16, 2015, or the
public is otherwise notified.

This prohibition covers all BC Parks, Crown lands and private lands
within the Coastal Fire Centre, with the exception of the area known as
the “Fog Zone” and Haida Gwaii.

It does not apply within the boundaries of a local government that has wildfire prevention bylaws in place and is serviced by a fire department.

Courtenay Fire Dept Deputy Chief Dennis Henderson says after discussing the issue this afternoon, open burns with a permit will still be allowed in the Courtenay Fire Protection District till the endof the month.

Before lighting any fire, residents should contact local authorities to check if any other restrictions are in place.

A map of the affected area is available online at:
http://bit.ly/1HIOlOb

Specifically, this Category 2 open fire prohibition applies to:

* The burning of any material (piled or unpiled) smaller than two
metres in height and three metres in width.
* The burning of stubble or grass fires over an area less than 2,000
square metres.
* The use of 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 order does not prohibit campfires that are a half-metre high by a
half-metre wide or smaller, or apply to cooking stoves that use gas,
propane or briquettes.

People lighting a campfire must maintain a fireguard by removing
flammable debris from around the campfire area and they must have a
hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to
properly extinguish the fire. Make sure that your fire is completely
extinguished and the ashes are cold to the touch before you leave the
area for any length of time.

Any person lighting larger Category 3 fires (or more than two fires of
any size) must comply with open burning regulations and must first
obtain a burn registration number by calling 1 888 797-1717.

Anyone who lights, fuels or uses an open fire when a fire prohibition
is in place or fails to comply with an open fire prohibition may be
issued a ticket for $345 or, if convicted in court, be fined up to
$100,000 and/or sentenced to one year in jail.

If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be
subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 and ordered to pay all
firefighting and associated costs.

The Coastal Fire Centre covers all of 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
cellphone.

For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning
restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, go to:
http://www.bcwildfire.ca