If you’ve been longing for a s’mores and guitar session by the campfire this summer in BC, you have two night’s left to get your fix.

With BC in a midst of a current an extreme heat wave, a campfire ban will be taking effect in the areas within the BC Coastal Fire Centre’s jurisdiction – this includes all Vancouver Island and the lower mainland area.

The provincial weather forecast calls for record-breaking high temperatures throughout BC this week and follows a spring of lower-than-average precipitation in the southern half of the province.

These conditions are expected to persist in the coming weeks.

The ban is set to take effect starting at noon on Wednesday, June 30th, meaning all campfires and Category 3 fires will be prohibited until October 2021, or until the order is rescinded.

A campfire is defined as any fire smaller than 0.5 metres high by 0.5 metres wide.

The ban is not applicable to CSA-rated or ULC-rated cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, as long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres – so you’re still good to cook while camping this summer.

The restrictions apply to both public and private land unless otherwise specified in a local government bylaw.

Anyone found in violation of the open burning prohibition could be issued a ticket for $1,150, required to pay an administrative penalty of $10,000 or, if convicted in court, fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to a year in jail.

If the violation causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may also be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

In addition to campfires, Category 2, and Category 3 open fires, the following activities are also prohibited:

  • the use of fireworks
  • the use of sky lanterns
  • the use of burn barrels or burn cages of any size or description
  • the use of binary exploding targets
  • the use of tiki and similar kinds of torches
  • the use of chimineas

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire, or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on a cell phone.

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