Campfires will be prohibited in B.C. starting tomorrow (June 30), according to the provincial government.
The province said record-breaking high temperatures across B.C., after below-average spring precipitation levels in the southern half of the province are the reasons for the ban. The order is in effect until Oct. 15, unless the province rescinds it.
“Camping is a long-standing tradition in this province. The B.C. government recognizes that people also enjoy having campfires, so it takes any decision to implement a campfire ban very seriously,” reads a release from the province.
The use of fireworks, sky lanterns, burn barrels or cages, binary exploding targets, tiki torches and chimineas is also prohibited, according to the province. Additionally, use of outdoor stoves or other portable campfire apparatus without a Canadian Standards Association (CSA) or Underwriter Laboratories of Canada (ULC) rating is not allowed.
Penalties range from a $1,150 ticket to jail time. If a person is found to have caused or contributed to a wildfire, they may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.
Category 2 and 3 open fires will also be prohibited. The provincial government said BC Wildfire Service will take additional precautions, including fire warden patrols, aircraft patrols and an active enforcement presence.
“Wildfire prevention is a shared responsibility. Human-caused wildfires are completely preventable and divert critical resources away from lightning-caused fires,” the release said.