Seasonal fire restrictions in BC’s Cariboo Fire Centre start on Monday
Effective Monday, April 2, 2012, at 12 noon, the size of open fires will be restricted within the Cariboo Fire Centre in British Columbia to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect the public.
Specifically, this will prohibit:
- The burning of any waste, slash or other materials (piled or unpiled) at a size larger than one metre by one metre.
- The burning of more than two open fires of any size at the same time.
- Stubble or grass fires of any size over any area.
The prohibition will remain in effect until Sept. 30, 2012, or until further notice.
This prohibition covers all B.C. parks, Crown lands and private lands, but it does not apply within the boundaries of a local government that has forest fire prevention bylaws in place and is serviced by a fire department. Before lighting any fire, residents should check with local civic authorities regarding any current prohibitions.
Anyone found in contravention of an open fire prohibition may be issued a ticket for $345, or, if convicted in court, may be fined up to $100,000 and sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person may be subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 and be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.
The Cariboo Fire Centre is one of six wildland fire centres operated by the B.C. Forest Service’s Wildfire Management Branch, and covers an area of about 10.3 million hectares, stretching as far south as Loon Lake to just north of Quesnel at the Cottonwood River. From east to west, the boundaries stretch from the western edge of Wells Gray Provincial Park to the eastern boundary of Tweedsmuir Provincial Park.
The Cariboo Fire Centre is divided into two main climatic belts: the western dry belt and the eastern wet belt. The dry belt ranges from sagebrush with lone Douglas Firs to thinly grassed meadows to well-spaced lodgepole pine, Douglas Fir and Spruce. The eastern wet belt has extensive cedar, hemlock, spruce and balsam. Between these two areas there is a transition zone, roughly between the Fraser and Highway 97. This area has similar vegetation in the valleys to the adjoining part of the Kamloops Region, with well-spaced Douglas fir and some areas of ponderosa pine, with some open grass areas. This area has a milder climate due to the more southerly latitude and lower elevations in the deeper valley bottoms.
For the latest information on fire activity, conditions and prohibitions in British Columbia, visit the Wildfire Management Branch website: http://www.bcwildfire.ca
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