Tinder dry conditions spark reminder from fire centre

Little precipitation expected throughout October

Downed power lines caused a small grass fire on Gabriola Island around noon Tuesday, prompting fire officials to remind the public just how dry the environment is.

Donna MacPherson, spokeswoman for the Coastal Fire Centre, said the 0.3-hectare fire was quickly put under control, but continues to be monitored to ensure it doesn’t restart. The Coastal Fire Centre sent three people and a helicopter to assist local fire personnel.

No property was damaged and no injuries were reported.

“It is stunningly dry,” said MacPherson. “The area of Gabriola and Nanaimo is actually in an extreme fire danger rating. We had a fair amount of wind overnight and that is very drying. The outflow winds that we had come from the Interior which is dry so whatever moisture is in it has been sucked out.”

Currently, fireworks and backyard burns are banned under a Category 2 prohibition and are expected to be so until some moisture arrives, which, according to MacPherson, said won’t be for a while.

“Our forecasters say the furthest on the horizon we’d be expecting precipitation would be the middle of the month, which will likely be a single day event. Behind that is even more dry until at least the end of the month,” she said.

Nanaimo News Bulletin

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