The Kamloops Fire Centre is urging the public to abide by the current campfire prohibition or face fines and possible prosecution.
A campfire ban, which includes the prohibition of fireworks and burning barrels, went into effect on Aug. 1 in the Kamloops Fire Centre. However, recent patrols by fire wardens, natural resource officers and the Conservation Officer Service, as well as reports from the public, indicate an increase in non-compliant campfire use.
Throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre, the Conservation Officer Service has issued seven violation tickets and 11 warnings related to these prohibitions over the last two weekends.
The consequences for having a campfire or lighting fireworks include:
• A violation ticket of $345 for all people in attendance of a campfire.
• A violation ticket of $230 for all people participating in lighting fireworks.
Prosecution is another course of action that may result in a fine of up to $100,000 and/or a one-year imprisonment. If campfires or fireworks cause a wildfire, the person(s) responsible may be fined $1 million, face three years in prison and be required to pay for all fire suppression costs related to that fire.
Natural resource officers have responded to a number of abandoned campfires while the campfire ban has been in place.
Members of the public are reminded that if they see anyone contravening the ban, they should write a description of any vehicle in the immediate area and call the wildfire reporting line, *5555 on your cellphone, immediately.
The Kamloops Fire Centre has responded to 155 wildfires in the region, 13 of which were caused by people.
During times of intense lightning activity, all personnel and resources are needed to respond to naturally occurring wildfires. Person-caused fires are preventable and tie up vital firefighting resources.
To report a wildfire or prohibited campfire, call *5555 on your cellular phone or call toll-free to 1-800-663-5555.
For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: www.bcwildfire.ca