May 15, 2015 - 3:33 PM
THOMPSON-OKANAGAN – In light of the unseasonably hot and dry conditions throughout the province, Premier Christy Clark is asking residents to be extra cautious this long weekend.
"Every summer, the risk of fire increases. With many parts of the province facing unseasonably warm and dry weather, that risk increases even more — putting people's homes and lives at risk. This long weekend, please be mindful and take extra care with your campfires and barbecues," Clark says.
Fresh from a visit to Prince George, Premier Clark saw first-hand the devastation caused by the Little Bobtail Lake wildfire. The first major fire of the year, it has burned roughly 13,000 hectares to date.
Some parts of B.C., including Kamloops, have already experienced "high" and "extreme" fire danger warning, an indication of what’s to come this fire season. The long-term weather outlook does not bode well, as many areas of the province are expecting temperatures above normal this summer.
Small campfires are currently permitted throughout B.C., however almost half of all wildfires each year are human-made. Since this carelessness tie up Wildfire Management Branch resources, the Premier is asking everyone to do their part.
Residents and visitors to B.C. are asked to refrain from the following:
• Idling vehicles, using fireworks, discarding cigarettes and using industrial equipment anywhere near combustible material.
• Don't park your motorcycle, all-terrain vehicle or any other off-road vehicle on grass or near combustible material.
• Use an approved spark arrester on your vehicles exhaust system
• Take appropriate precautions with all heat sources, including campfires, outdoor stoves, barbecues and smoking materials.
As it pertains to campfire safety:
• Campfires cannot be larger than 0.5 metres high by 0.5 metres wide.
• You must maintain a one-metre fireguard or enclosure around the campfire.
• Do not light a campfire in windy conditions.
• Never leave a campfire unattended.
• Make sure that the campfire is completely extinguished and before leaving your campsite.
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