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Wildfire risk a concern this weekend

People are asked to take care with open burning this weekend as the risk of wildfire increases.
March 06, 2015 - 10:43 AM

THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - People are urged to be cautious with any open burning this weekend as we get set to experience warmer temperatures and a continued early drying trend.

With temperatures set to hit the double digits every day over the next week, B.C. Wildfire warns there is an increased 'preventable' wildfire risk heading into the weekend because the grass and small shrub layers are ‘unseasonably dry.’ Dead grasses have dried out quickly, putting the conditions almost three weeks ahead of when we would normally see them.

While this is the time of year people are encouraged to take steps to mitigate interface wildfire risks, people looking to do open burning are asked to pay attention to changing weather conditions and follow all regulations.

If you are conducting an open burn first check with your local fire department, municipality or regional district for any burn restrictions that may be in place and check the venting conditions prior to starting. Larger industrial and grass burns, over 0.2 hectares, require a burn registration number.

Also ensure you have the right tools and enough water on hand to control the fire and do not burn in windy conditions. Create a fireguard before starting by clearing away twigs, grass, leaves and other combustible material and consider doing smaller burns around the perimeter to create a fuel break if you are planning a larger fire. Never leave the fire unattended and always make sure the fire is completely extinguished with the ashes cold to the touch before leaving the area.

If you see smoke or flames, call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on your cell phone. More information on the latest conditions and wildfire situation can also be found at the B.C. Wildfire website, on Twitter or on Facebook.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015
InfoTel News Ltd

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