Open Fire Prohibition Scheduled For Coastal Fire Centre

June 22, 2021

Effective at noon Pacific Time on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, most open burning activities will be prohibited throughout the Coastal Fire Centre's jurisdiction. This prohibition is being enacted to help reduce wildfire risk and protect public safety.

Category 2 and Category 3 open fires will be prohibited throughout the Coastal Fire Centre's jurisdiction with the exception of Haida Gwaii. Category 2 and 3 open fires will not be prohibited in Haida Gwaii.

A map of the affected areas is available online:

This prohibition applies to all public and private land unless specified otherwise (e.g., in a local government bylaw). People are asked to check with local government authorities for any other restrictions before lighting any fire.

Specifically, this prohibition refers to the following activities:

"category 2 open fire" which means an open fire, other than a campfire, that
a) burns material in one pile not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width,
b) burns material concurrently in 2 piles each not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width, or
c) burns stubble or grass over an area that does not exceed 0.2 ha.

"category 3 open fire" which means an open fire that burns
a) material concurrently in 3 or more piles each not exceeding 2 m in height and 3 m in width,
b) material in one or more piles each exceeding 2 m in height or 3 m in width,
c) one or more windows, or
d) stubble or grass over an area exceeding 0.2 ha.

Also prohibited are the activities listed below (Wildfire Act, Section 12):
* Binary exploding targets
* Burn barrels or burn cages of any size or description
* Air curtain burners

This prohibition does not apply to campfires that are a half-metre high by a half-metre wide or smaller, or to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes. A poster explaining the different categories of open burning is available online:

Anyone lighting a campfire must maintain a fireguard by removing flammable debris from around the campfire area and have a hand tool or at least eight litres of water available nearby to properly extinguish the fire.

When implementing open fire prohibitions in the past, the Coastal Fire Centre sometimes excluded a two-kilometre strip of land along the outer coast of Vancouver Island (commonly known as the fog zone) due in part to a lack of fire-related community bylaws in the area at the time. It has been determined that it is no longer necessary to exclude this two-kilometre strip of land from open fire prohibitions enacted within the BC Wildfire Service's jurisdiction.

Anyone found in contravention of an open fire prohibition may be issued a violation ticket for $1,150, required to pay an administrative penalty of up to $10,000 or, if convicted in court, fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open fire violation, call 1-800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cell phone. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories go to:

Learn More:

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Julia Caranci
Coastal Fire Centre
BC Wildfire Service
Coastal Fire Centre