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Category 3 burning to be prohibited in the Southeast Fire Centre

Effective at noon PST on Friday, June 11, 2021, Category 3 open burning, as defined in the Wildfire Regulation, will be prohibited.

Responding to a drier than normal conditions in the region during the spring of 2021, the Southeast Fire Centre, effective at noon PST on Friday, June 11, 2021, Category 3 open burning, as defined in the Wildfire Regulation, will be prohibited.

This prohibition includes the Rocky Mountain Natural Resource District and the Selkirk Natural Resource District.

“The BC Wildfire Service is implementing this prohibition to help prevent wildfires caused by Category 3 burning and to protect public safety,” the  Southeast Fire Centre said in a media release Friday.

Southeast Fire Centre is providing a map indicating the areas affected by this prohibition is available online: http://ow.ly/yTjI50F3h3q

The Southeast Fire Centre said specifically, prohibited activities that would constitute a Category 3 open fire include:

  • any fire larger than two metres high by three metres wide
  • three or more concurrently burning piles no larger than two metres high by three metres wide
  • burning of one or more windrows, and
  • burning of stubble or grass over an area greater than 0.2 hecatres

Anyone holding a Category 3 registration number anywhere in the Southeast Fire Centre's jurisdiction must ensure their piles are extinguish by the June 11, 2021, deadline and may not light past this date. 

The Southeast Fire Centre said this prohibition will remain in effect until noon on Oct. 9, 2021, or until the order is rescinded.

“This prohibition applies to all public and private land, unless specified otherwise (e.g., in a local government bylaw),” the Southeast Fire Centre said.

The public is urged to check with local government authorities for any other restrictions before lighting any fire.

“This prohibition does not ban campfires that are a half-metre high by a high-metre wide or smaller, and does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes,” the Southeast Fire Centre said.

“This prohibition also does not ban Category 2 fires, which include one or two concurrently burning piles up to two metres high by three metres wide each, or the burning of stubble or grass in an area less than 0.2 hectares.”

A poster explaining the different categories of open burning is available online: http://ow.ly/znny309kJv5

Anyone found in contravention of an open fire prohibition may 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 contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

The Southeast Fire Centre would like to thank the public for its continuing help in preventing wildfires. To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.