Follow FireSmart Homeowner’s Manual tips

Public urged to help protect communities from wildfires

Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Minister Steve Thomson is urging all British Columbians to do their part this year to help prevent wildfires and reduce fire risks, including using FireSmart principles to help protect homes and communities.

Many parts of B.C. are experiencing unseasonably warm and dry conditions this spring, including the South Cariboo.

BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) crews have responded to 59 wildfires since April 1 – almost all of them were caused by people.

Fire prevention is a shared responsibility of the B.C. Liberal government, local governments, industry, stakeholders and individuals.

Wildfires caused by people unnecessarily divert firefighting crews and resources from naturally occurring fires.

Homeowners are encouraged to safeguard their properties from wildfire threats by using FireSmart principles. By reducing the amount of flammable material around their homes and providing more open space where firefighters can work, private property owners can help slow the spread of an approaching wildfire.

The recently updated FireSmart Homeowner’s Manual was developed to help people reduce the risk of personal property damage due to wildfires. It contains lots of fire prevention tips and is available online at http://bit.ly/1RQXFzd.

Anyone who spots a wildfire, unattended campfire or burning violation should immediately call *5555 on a cell phone or 1-800-663-5555 toll-free.

Up-to-date information about current wildfire activity and burning restrictions is available online at http://www.bcwildfire.ca.

Folks can also follow the latest wildfire news:

On Twitter at: http://twitter.com/BCGovFireInfo

* On Facebook at: http://facebook.com/BCForestFireInfo

 

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Anyone found in contravention of an open fire prohibition may be issued a ticket for $1,150 or, if convicted in court, be fined up to $100,000 and sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 and be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

Many wildfire-related fines were increased on April 1. Details are available online at

http://bcwildfire.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/DisplayArticle.asp?ID=2602.

 

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