Open fire ban begins on parts of Vancouver Island


Campers heading to Vancouver Island this Victoria Day long weekend may want to take note.

Open burning bans begin on Friday for the so called Fog Zone, which is a two-kilometre strip of land along the outer coast of Vancouver Island, stretching from Owen Point, near Port Renfrew, north to the tip of Vancouver Island and to Port Hardy.

This map shows the Fog Zone area of Vancouver Island. Beginning Friday, there will be a ban on opening burning in this region. Small campfires will still be allowed. [PNG Merlin Archive]

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This map shows the Fog Zone area of Vancouver Island. Beginning Friday, there will be a ban on opening burning in this region. Small campfires will still be allowed. [PNG Merlin Archive]

The ban is in effect until October and is aimed at preventing human-caused wildfires.

The means no beach bonfires, or using fireworks, firecrackers or sky lanterns.

But campers can still have a small campfire to roast their marshmallows. The ban does not include campfires that are smaller than a half-metre high by a half-metre wide, or cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.

The government says campers must remove flammable debris from around the campfire site and have a hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to properly extinguish the fire.

They also must ensure that the campfire is completely extinguished and the ashes are cold to the touch before leaving the area for any length of time.

Those who ignore the open fire ban could face fines of up to $100,000 and/or be sentenced to one year in jail. Those who cause a wildfire could be on the hook for all the costs it takes to battle the blaze.

ticrawford@postmedia.com

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Source:: Vancouver Sun

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