Campfire ban

Effective at noon on Thursday, Aug. 1, all campfires will be prohibited across the Kamloops Fire Centre. A map of the area covered by the campfire ban, which includes Penticton, is available online.

This step was initiated by the Kamloops Fire Centre to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety. The fire danger rating is currently “high” throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre, with scattered pockets of “extreme." With the current trend of warm and dry weather, wildfires in the region have displayed very aggressive behaviour and required additional fire suppression resources.

The City of Penticton is acting In accordance with the regional campfire ban, and will close fire pits at Okanagan and Skaha lakes effective noon on Thursday, Aug. 1.

Human-caused wildfires can divert critical resources and crews from responding to naturally occurring wildfires. Open burning is prohibited throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre. This prohibition applies to open fires of any size, fires with a burn registration number, industrial burning, fireworks, tiki torches, sky lanterns and burning barrels.

The prohibition does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus with a CSA or ULC rating that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, as long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres. The open burning prohibition covers all BC Parks, Crown and private lands, but does not apply within the boundaries of local governments that have forest fire prevention bylaws and are serviced by a fire department. Please check with local governments for any other restrictions before lighting a fire.

Anyone found in violation of an open fire ban, including campfires, may be issued a ticket for up to $345. Anyone who causes a wildfire through arson or recklessness may be fined up to $1 million, spend up to three years in prison and be held accountable for associated firefighting costs. This prohibition will remain in place until the public is notified that it has been rescinded.

For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, go to the provincial website. You can also follow the latest wildfire news on Twitter and Facebook.