August 29, 2014 - 7:23 AM
THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - Most campfire bans have been lifted heading into the Labour Day long weekend but that does not mean you should be careless with your fires while camping.
B.C. Wildfire is reminding people to use extreme caution while out camping or in the backcountry. Last weekend, just days after the campfire ban was lifted in the Kamloops Fire Centre, crews had to deal with reports of nine abandoned campfires.
Almost half of all wildfires every year are caused by human activity, and so far this year we are on target to meet that statistic in the Kamloops Fire Centre with more than 150 human-caused fires already on the books. These fires are often caused by cigarette butts, motorized vehicles or campfires.
Campers are asked to keep a shovel or at least eight litres of water nearby to properly extinguish campfires and to keep those fires under 0.5 metres high by 0.5 metres wide. Also pay attention to the wind, do not light or keep a campfire burning in windy conditions because it can carry embers and cause fires outside of the pit.
Always ensure a fire is completely extinguished (ashes cold to the touch) before leaving for any length of time and never leave a campfire unattended.
Open fires are still prohibited throughout most of the province, including fireworks, burning barrels, slash piles and burning of stubble or grass.
To report a wildfire or unattended campfire, call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on your cell.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at email@example.com or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-718-2724.
Credit: Province of B.C.
Smokey’s ice bucket campfire safety video
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014