October 02, 2015 - 1:00 PM
PENTICTON - The B.C. Wildfire Service may have rescinded the campfire ban on lands within provincial jurisdiction, but Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen residents shouldn’t get the marshmallows out just yet.
The regional district’s open fire ban remains in place for all lands which are contained within the regional district fire protection areas, including Anarchist Mountain, Kaleden, Keremeos, Naramata, Okanagan Falls, Tulameen and Willowbrook fire areas.
Community Services Manager Mark Woods says the district consulted with its fire chiefs prior to making the decision to maintaining the ban.
“We checked with our fire chiefs, and all but one felt it was appropriate maintaining the ban,” he says, noting Tulameen as the only department which saw conditions normal enough to warrant lifting the restriction.
“They are in a different climate, probably not that far from having snow, but everywhere else, the dryness is still apparent,” Woods says, adding there did not appear to be any areas in the district which have seen appreciable rain in the past few weeks.
“We’re looking for consistency in our response from the fire departments and we’ll be monitoring the situation closely as burning season approaches on October 15.”
Woods says a lift of the ban is largely dependent on local weather patterns, and if the current weather trend continues, a delay on open burning season may be a reality as well in the coming weeks.
The regional district ban does not restrict fires in stoves using gas, propane or briquettes, but includes all open fires, campfires, and fires in portable burning fireplaces.
Provincial Parks and campgrounds are considered Crown land and fall under the provincial authority.
To see if you are in the Region District Okanagan Similkameen fire service area, check the website.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015