Seasonal fire restrictions take effect Friday

By James Peters
May 15, 2017 - 11:00am Updated: May 15, 2017 - 2:06pm

KAMLOOPS — Despite the wet spring, the Kamloops Fire Centre is putting seasonal fire restrictions in place effective this Friday.

Category 2 and 3 fires will be prohibited in the Merritt, Lillooet and Penticton Fire Zones, as well as the South Prohibition Area of the Kamloops Fire Zone.

The same categories will also be prohibited below 1,200 metres in the Vernon Fire Zone and the North Prohibition Area of the Kamloops Fire Zone.

Fire Information Officer Max Birkner says these categories refer to larger fires, and not campfires.

"Category 2 and 3 burning activities include the burning of more than two open fires of any size at the same time, as well as the burning of stubble or grass over any area, as well as the use of fireworks, burning barrels and the use of binary expoloding targets," said Birkner.

Birkner says even though this spring has been unseasonably wet, fuels can still dry out quickly.

"This is the time of year that those prohibitions come into place. Of course, we've had a lot of precipitation this year but the fuels are still very dry and it's this time of year that those types of fires begin to pose a hazard."

"Right now, the fire danger rating in the Kamloops Fire Centre is generally 'low,' with some pockets of 'moderate' in Lytton. But the weather changes very quickly. It can be raining one day, and then the wind blows and the sun comes out and those fuels dry out immediately. We're trying to avoid any human-caused fires this time of year."

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