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Open burning season ends April 30

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April 24, 2016 - 5:00 PM

CENTRAL OKANAGAN - Eligible property owners with permits have until dusk Saturday, April 30 to wrap up any open burning in the Central Okanagan.

Under Regional District and local fire bylaws, if conditions are favourable, permitted open burning starts Oct. 1 and must be complete by nightfall April 30. Fire chiefs may however change the dates depending on the fire hazard in their specific area.

Until April 30, those Central Okanagan residents with properties greater than one hectare will be allowed to burn outdoors, if they have a permit from their local fire authority and only after confirming that burning is allowed on a particular day. Farmers and large lot owners must also follow these regulations before lighting wood debris piles.

Prior to igniting any fire, eligible property owners with a valid permit must call the toll-free Outdoor Burning Hotline: 1-855-262-2876 (BURN). It will advise whether open burning is allowed on a particular day. Both the Venting and Air Quality must be good in order for burning to occur within Central Okanagan fire jurisdictions. This information is also available each morning after 8 a.m. at regionaldistrict.com/airquality.

On days when open burning is allowed, it’s recommended that debris piles be ignited after 10 a.m., when proper venting conditions are more likely to exist.

Under the Regional District Smoke Control Bylaw, creating nuisance smoke from open burning is not allowed in the City of Kelowna, the District of Lake Country, City of West Kelowna and the Central Okanagan East and West Electoral Areas or under the bylaws of the District of Peachland.

Violators could receive a fine or be charged with the cost of putting out the fire. Residents are encouraged to report anyone illegally burning on a non-burning day by calling the Regional Fire Dispatch Center at 250-469-8577.

Eligible property owners within the Central Okanagan East or the Central Okanagan West electoral areas may obtain a permit by calling the Regional District at 250-469-6223 (Long Distance Collect Calls are accepted) weekdays only between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm, excluding holidays. All other eligible property owners must obtain a permit from their municipal fire department.

All Central Okanagan property owners regardless of property size are encouraged to take advantage of other options to dispose of their yard waste. 

- The bi-weekly curbside yard waste collection program is underway through the end of November. Residents are reminded to only place leaves, grass, pine needles and small prunings inside their wheeled yard waste cart with the green lid closed.
- Residents may also choose to use the year-round free yard waste program (up to 250 kilograms/550 pounds and 20 centimeters or less in diameter – fees apply for loads exceeding the maximum weight and diameter) at the Glenmore landfill (Open seven days a week 7:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.).  As of April 1 nominal fees apply for yard waste disposal at the Westside Residential Waste Disposal Centre (Open 7:30 a.m. to 3:50 p.m. Friday through Monday) of Asquith Road in West Kelowna. Please make sure all loads are covered.
- As well, a number of private companies offer wood chipping and grinding services or rent portable chippers. Some may also pick up yard waste for disposal.

Most of the burning permits that are issued in the Central Okanagan are for agricultural burning, which is allowed under Provincial Right to Farm legislation. However, before starting any fire farmers must also call 1-855-262-2876 (BURN) or visit regionaldistrict.com/airquality to ensure burning is allowed. The Regional Air Quality Program is working with farmers to encourage the use of the Agricultural Chipping Program as an alternate disposal method.

Fire Department Jurisdictions for Permits:

Central Okanagan East or Central Okanagan West Electoral Areas 
(Ellison, Joe Rich, Wilson’s Landing, North Westside residents):
Call the Regional District
(250-469-6223 weekdays only 8:00 am – 4:00 pm excluding holidays)
Note: North Westside residents may call ‘Collect’ or avoid long distance charges by using a cellular phone. They may also contact North Westside Fire/Rescue at 250-545-1195 to obtain a permit.

City of Kelowna residents contact - Kelowna Fire Department 250-469-8801
Lake Country residents contact - Lake Country Fire Department 250-766-2327
Peachland residents contact - Peachland Fire and Rescue Service 250-767-2841
West Kelowna residents contact – West Kelowna Fire Rescue 778-797-3200
All West Kelowna municipal burning permits are issued from Lakeview Station 32, 2708 Olalla Road

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
InfoTel News Ltd

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