The City of Nanaimo has placed a full ban on open fires.
The ban started Tuesday, July 17, and came one day ahead of a provincial campfire ban, which goes into effect today, July 18.
Lantzville is also imposing the open fire ban, which includes all outdoor wood fires, such as campfires and cooking fires. Sky lanterns, Tiki torches, fireworks, firecrackers, chimineas, incinerators, burning barrels, burning cages and binary exploding targets used for target practice and any stove or portable campfire devices that have not been CSA or ULC approved are also not permitted.
Devices that are permitted for cooking and heating include, cooking devices fueled by propane, natural gas, naphtha, kerosene, charcoal briquettes or electricity such as barbecues, grills, smokers, and portable or fixed campfire devices.
With hot, dry summer weather, Nanaimo firefighters are continually responding to small accidental fires.
Solid fuel fires, such as wood fires, produce embers that can be extremely dangerous when combined with hot, dry, windy conditions and is also important to ensure that barbecue briquettes are fully extinguished after use.
The City of Nanaimo is also reminding everyone no smoking or fires are permitted in city parks.
“With hotter weather comes an increased risk of any fire spreading quickly. It is important for residents to be vigilant in fire safety and to report all fires immediately by calling 911,” Karen Fry, Nanaimo Fire Rescue chief and director of public safety, said in a press release.
The provincial fire ban encompasses all land within the Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction except for Haida Gwaii and the area known as the fog zone.
The ban was enacted, according to a provincial press release, because of high temperatures and no rain in the immediate weather forecast. Since April 1, 69 per cent of wildfires within the Coastal Fire Centre were caused by people.
Anyone who contravenes an open burning ban can be issued a ticket for $1,150, required to pay an administrative penalty of $10,000 or, if convicted in court, fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or starts a wildfire, the person responsible could also be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.