We’re in this together! Over the past few years, wildfires have become an unfortunate regular occurrence in BC. Although Mother Nature often has her own agenda, there are steps we can take to help minimize or prevent wildfires.
As homeowners we can take simple steps to reduce the impact of wildfire on our property and in our communities. Wildfires are unpredictable and interface fires present unique challenges and obstacles but by being practical and proactive it is possible to reduce the risk of wildfire before it threatens your home and community.
Prevention means stopping wildfires before they start. Discarded cigarette butts, campfires, hot exhaust pipes coming into contact with dry grass and vegetation, power tools (such as chainsaws), Tiki torches and even discarded glass can all ignite a wildfire. It is important to exercise caution when in the outdoors, not only when enjoying a campfire or off-roading in the backcountry, but also in using tools and handling, storing and disposing of materials and fuels.
Drones and UAVs
The operation of any aircraft not associated with fire suppression activities (including drones and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)) near a wildfire is illegal. It also poses a serious threat to the safety of firefighting personnel.
Transport Canada and the BC Wildfire Service explicitly prohibit the use of UAVs or drones of any size near a wildfire. All wildfires are considered to be automatically “flight restricted” according to the federal Canadian Aviation Regulations. The restricted area is within a radius of five nautical miles around the fire and to an altitude of 3,000 feet above ground level. The current maximum fine for an infraction is $25,000 and violators could spend up to 18 months in jail.
Prescribed burning is one of a number of fuel management tools and techniques that can be used to help reduce the intensity of naturally occurring wildfires while returning an integral process to the ecosystem.
Fire and Fuel Management
Fire and fuel management is a holistic approach incorporating integrated land management in which fire regimes and effects, values at risk and multiple resource use activities are considered.
Province of British Columbia – Wildfire Prevention