Effective noon today, the ban on campfires will be lifted in most Central Okanagan areas. Campfires are not permitted at any time within the City of Kelowna.
The ban on campfires within local government fire jurisdictions in the Central Okanagan has been in place since July 7th. Forecast showers and cooler temperatures are expected to reduce the potential fire threat.
Starting this afternoon, campfires will again be allowed within the Regional District of Central Okanagan fire protection areas (Ellison, Joe Rich, North Westside, Wilsons Landing), the City of West Kelowna, District of Lake Country, and District of Peachland with appropriate precautions to prevent a spread of the fire.
All smoking materials should be carefully extinguished and motorists are reminded not to throw cigarettes or other smoking materials from their vehicle. As well, smoking is not allowed in any RDCO regional park or municipal park. Smoking is also prohibited in children’s play areas, sports fields, undeveloped parks and wilderness trails in the District of Peachland. Please remember that fireworks are not allowed at any time in most areas of the Central Okanagan. Use of fireworks in the District of Lake Country and City of West Kelowna must be approved in writing by the Fire Chief.
Meanwhile, for the first time since 2012, the start of the open burning season in the Central Okanagan will be delayed.
Under Regional District and local fire bylaws, permitted open burning may start October 1st and must be complete by April 30th. However, fire chiefs may change the dates depending on the fire hazard in their area.
This year, due to the ongoing elevated risk of fires, Central Okanagan fire chiefs have decided to postpone the start of open burning When conditions improve, a date will be announced that they will begin issuing permits for those property owners eligible to burn outdoors.
Violators could receive a fine and be charged the cost of the fire department response to a burning complaint. Residents are encouraged to report anyone who is illegally burning by calling the Regional Fire Dispatch Centre at 250-469-8577.