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Cariboo Fire Centre urging caution when burning

The Cariboo Fire Centre is encouraging the public to exercise caution with any outdoor burning activities, due to predicted windy conditions in the region that could bring gusts up to 40 kilometres per hour to some areas on Saturday.

The public is also reminded that Category 3 open fires will be prohibited within the Cariboo Fire Centre’s jurisdiction effective at noon on Monday, April 23, 2018. This prohibition does not apply to campfires or Category 2 fires. A poster explaining the different categories of open burning is available online:

Category 3 open burns 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.
  • one or more burning windrows.
  • burning of stubble or grass over an area greater than 0.2 hectares.

Anyone wishing to conduct a Category 3 open burn before noon on Monday must obtain a registration number ahead of time by calling 1 888 797-1717.

Always check the venting conditions before conducting an open burn. If venting conditions are rated “Poor” or “Fair”, open burning is restricted. The venting index can be found online:

People planning to light an open fire are encouraged to visit the BC Wildfire Service website and consult the B.C. FireSmart Homeowner’s Manual online:

Anyone planning to light an open fire must take the following precautions:

  • Ensure that enough people, water and tools are on hand to control the fire and prevent it from escaping.
  • Do not burn during windy conditions. Weather conditions can change quickly, and the wind may carry embers to other combustible material and start new fires.
  • Create a fireguard at least one metre around the planned fire site by clearing away twigs, grass, leaves and other combustible material.
  • If you are planning a large burn, consider conducting smaller burns around the perimeter beforehand to create a fuel break to help stop the fire from spreading beyond its intended size. Each of these fires should be kept small, and must be completely extinguished before starting a new fire.
  • Never leave a fire unattended.
  • Make sure that your fire is completely extinguished, and the ashes are cold to the touch before you leave the area for any length of time.

If an open burn escapes and causes a wildfire, the person responsible may be held accountable for damages and fire suppression costs. It is the responsibility of that individual to ensure that burning is done in a safe manner and in accordance with regulations and any current burning restrictions.

The Cariboo Fire Centre stretches from Loon Lake near Clinton in the south to the Cottonwood River near Quesnel in the north, and from Tweedsmuir Provincial Park in the west to Wells Gray Provincial Park in the east.

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, please call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

For up-to-date information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, call 1 888 3-FOREST, or visit:

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