Rain doesn’t wash away fire fears

All the rain recently has brought down the risk of forest fires, but has it, really?

After much prayer to the rain gods, Vancouver Island received a good bath of rain in the last two weeks, allowing fire departments to finally lessen their brow and lower fire conditions —  but does that mean it’s OK to burn piles of stuff again?

Absolutely not.

In fact, fire restrictions, which can go in effect as early as April, can remain in effect until late October even if the weather has been soaking wet.

In other words, regardless that some local fire departments, such as Sooke, Otter Point and Metchosin, changed their fire status from “extreme” to “low” fire restrictions on open burning (outside of camp fires and incinerators) remain in full effect.

In addition, provincial fire restrictions differ from those set by municipal fire departments who have their own unique set of bylaws and fire enforcement.

So naturally, with bylaws being different for each municipality, there’s been some recent confusion in the public on what it can or can’t burn. As a result, Sooke Fire Chief Steven Sorensen noted that fire trucks were dispatched last week to at least a dozen open burning fire complaints.

“You’re still not allowed to burn in September, and always check with your local municipality, because it is different everywhere,” he said.

Even between Sooke and Otter Point the bylaws are not the same, said Otter Point Fire Chief Kevan Brehart, who pointed out that the bylaw for Shirley, Otter Point, East Sooke and Port Renfrew (which is set by the CRD) strictly says that regardless of the weather, there is no open burning.

This was particularly confusing for contractors working this summer’s extreme periods, as the bylaw prohibits the use of machinery such as excavators and chainsaws in Otter Point, but is otherwise allowed in Sooke.

For Otter Point, there is no open burning until Oct. 1, and at that point residents still need permits. At the end of October, you only need a permit for larger piles (over six feet in diameter).If you’re doing a major cleanup, then you need a permit all winter. For a small garden, refuge piles, you only need a permit for shoulder seasons in the fall and spring.

news@sookenewsmirror.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

Victoria teen killed on field trip near Sooke

Second youth also injured in falling tree incident at Camp Barnard

UPDATE: Firefighters bring Sooke wildfire under control

Firefighters have a wildfire that burned an area about 100x150 feet at… Continue reading

Oak Bay double murder trial: Blood splatter analyst says no shoe prints found in unit

RCMP analyst testifies to smears, fingermarks, ‘swipe and wipe’ patterns around apartment

Sooke club gets kicks out of karate

Sooke Martial Arts Association provides unique sports outlet

Langford has ‘no plans’ to make changes to Western Speedway after noise complaints

Flyer passed out to residents voices concerns over racetrack noise

VIDEO: ‘Avengers: Endgame’ to be re-released with new footage

‘Avatar’ holds global box office record at $2.788 billion, while ‘Endgame’ stands at $2.743 billion…

Elias Pettersson wins Calder Trophy as NHL’s top rookie

Vancouver forward first Canuck to win award since Pavel Bure in 1992

FVRD chair calls B.C. incineration plan for Philippines waste ‘disturbing’

Metro Vancouver ‘uniquely capable’ of safely disposing of waste coming back to Canada, say officials

VIDEO: Acknowledging skeptics, finance minister vows to build Trans Mountain project

Bill Morneau said he recognizes ‘huge amount of anxiety’ in Calgary over future of oil and gas sector

Shovels could be in the ground on Trans Mountain by September, CEO says

Ian Anderson points to weeks likely required for NEB to reinstate 2016 regulatory record

RCMP allows officers to grow beards

Members can now wear beards and goatees, as long as they’re neatly groomed

Sooke’s new library construction a sad tale

Reader says if the public library project was in the private sector, heads would roll

Girl, 10, poisoned by carbon monoxide at B.C. campsite could soon return home

Lucille Beaurain died and daughter Micaela Walton, 10, was rushed to B.C. Children’s Hospital on May 18

30 years later: B.C. woman uses sidewalk chalk to reclaim site of her sexual assault

Vancouver woman didn’t think her powerful story, written in chalk, would ignite such support

Most Read