It’s going to be another summer without campfires in the Cariboo Chilcotin.
Effective noon Thursday, June 8, 2023, Category 1 campfires will be prohibited throughout the Cariboo Fire Centre and the Tsilhqot’in (Xeni Gwet’in) Declared Title Area, the Cariboo Fire Centre announced in a news release Tuesday afternoon, June 6.
The prohibition will remain in effect until noon on October 27, 2023, or until the order is rescinded.
The Kamloops Fire Centre also announced a campfire ban will come into effect in that region June 8.
A Category 1 campfire is defined as any fire smaller than 0.5 metres high by 0.5 metres wide.
“Camping is a long-standing tradition in this province. The Cariboo Fire Centre recognizes that members of the community enjoy having campfires, and so takes any decision to implement a campfire ban very seriously,” noted the news release. “The BC Wildfire Service is constantly monitoring current and forecast conditions and maintaining preparedness.
In addition to Category 1 campfires, Category 2, and Category 3 open fires, the following activities remain prohibited:
Burn barrels or burn cages of any size or description
Binary exploding targets
Tiki and similar kinds of torches
Air curtain burners
This prohibition does not include the use of outdoor stoves. As per the Wildfire Regulation, an outdoor stove is a CSA-rated or ULC-rated device used outdoors for cooking, heat or ambiance that burns charcoal briquettes, liquid fuel or gaseous fuel, and has a flame height that is less than 15 cm tall. The use of a campfire apparatus that does not meet these specifications is prohibited.
Category 2 fires have been prohibited throughout the entirety of the Cariboo Fire Centre since May 11, 2023. Category 3 fires have been prohibited throughout the Cariboo Fire Centre since May 4, 2023 and prohibited on the Tsilhqot’in (Xeni Gwet’in) Declared Title Area since May 8, 2023.
Human-caused wildfires are completely preventable and divert critical resources away from naturally caused fires. Always practice safe, responsible open fire use. Anyone found in contravention of an open-burning prohibition may be issued a violation ticket for $1,150, may be required to pay an administrative penalty of up to $10,000 or, if convicted in court, may be fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to a 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.
To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone.