Firefighters on the Shovel Lake Fire help secure the containment line on Sept. 02, 2018. (BC Wildfire Service photo)

Regulations need to change for logging debris on-site, says BC Forest Practices Board

Chair of the board says current requirements from logging companies can be improved

Logging debris should be cleared up sooner and trees taken to mills faster than called for in current regulations to reduce wildfire hazards, indicates a B.C. Forest Practices Board finding released today.

The board drew the conclusions after a member of a wildfire response team at the Shovel Lake fire last summer complained that he saw lots of debris and decked timber in the fire zone.

“He was concerned the materials contributed to the spread and severity of the fire,” the release stated.

During the investigation, a dozen cutblocks within the perimeter of the fire were examined to determine whether the forest licensees had met legal requirements to abate fire hazards.

“It was found that the licensees had either abated the hazards as required or the time period allowed for hazard abatement had not yet passed. In some cases the licensees were still actively logging when the fire swept through, so the decked logs and debris were consumed by the fire before the licensees had a chance to deal with the hazard,” read the release.

Kevin Kriese, chair of the Forest Practices Board said the investigation found that licensees had done what they were required to do.

He said even though logging will reduce the risk of fire in areas with a high fuel level caused by the mountain beetle, current requirements leave room for improvement.

“The investigation found that current requirements could be improved by reducing the time before abatement is required and reducing the amount of fuel left behind,” Kriese said.

“The BC Wildfire Service has established a working group to look at the current abatement strategy. The board is recommending that review include the length of time before the hazard has to be treated and the amount of fuels permitted to be left on-site after abatement,” he said, adding other considerations such as smoke biodiversity, carbon sequestration and silviculture requirements.

READ MORE: VIDEO/PHOTOS: A look behind the scenes at the Horsefly Lake fire complex


Aman Parhar
Editor, Vanderhoof Omineca Express

aman.parhar@ominecaexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Williams Lake library makes creative adjustments, offers story time online

Videos of branch assistant Darren Smith reading out loud will be posted regularly

Williams Lake agencies collaborate to support local businesses impacted by COVID-19

‘We are trying to make sure we are making good referrals,’ said City’s economic development officer

Xeni Gwet’in Wagon Trip cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic, no Williams Lake Stampede in 2020

The trip has been a wonderful addition to the historic Stampede for the last 11 years

COVID19: 94th Williams Lake Stampede officially cancelled for 2020 due to pandemic

Stampede directors hope to host a community event in the fall if possible

UPDATE: Two men arrested by Williams Lake RCMP on Winger Road were known to police

The vehicle towed was associated with suspicious behaviour in the area, say RCMP

VIDEO: B.C. singer creates frontline workers tribute song

Cambree Lovesy’s song saluting those battling COVID-19 draws interest online

COVID-19 death toll reaches 50 in B.C., while daily case count steadies

B.C. records 34 new cases in the province, bringing total active confirmed cases to 462

UNBC opts for virtual convocation in June, commits to face-to-face after COVID-19

Interim president Geoff Payne said feedback prompted him to commit to traditional one when possible

Researchers to study whether plasma of recovered patients can treat COVID-19

Plasma is the liquid portion of the blood that contains the antibodies that protect against illness

B.C., Alberta health ministers urge public to stay home Easter weekend

Regional politicians, online petition calling for closure of provincial border to non-essential traffic

B.C.’s COVID-19 rent supplement starts taking applications

$300 to $500 to landlords for April, May and June if eligible

B.C. unveils $5M for mental health supports during the COVID-19 pandemic

Will include virtual clinics and resources for British Columbians, including front-line workers

B.C. First Nations Health Authority launches virtual doctor program

Program to provide primary health care through COVID-19 pandemic

Most Read