Burn rules loosen in Kootenays as weather eases fire concerns

Category 2 and 3 fires will be allowed in most areas — but know the regulations

Cool, wet weather is allowing fire officials to lift a ban on fireworks, grass fires and larger burn piles in most of the Kootenays.

Starting Tuesday at noon, Category 2 and Category 3 open burning prohibitions within the Southeast Fire Centre’s jurisdiction will be amended, the centre announced on Monday.

A Category 2 open burn permits:

  • one or two concurrently burning piles, no larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
  • the burning of stubble or grass over an area less than 0.2 hectares;
  • the use of fireworks, burn barrels, burn cages, sky lanterns and exploding binary targets.

Category 3 open burning will be permitted throughout the Arrow Lakes, Kootenay Lake and Columbia fire zones of the Southeast Fire Centre. However, a Category 3 open burning prohibition will remain in effect for the Boundary, Invermere and Cranbrook fire zones.

SEE: What zone are you in? Check the SEFC map

In those areas, the following are still prohibited:

  • any fire larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
  • three or more concurrently burning piles no larger than two metres high by three metres wide;
  • the burning of stubble or grass over an area greater than 0.2 hectares;
  • the burning of one or more windrows.

Anyone planning to conduct a Category 2 or Category 3 open burn in the Southeast Fire Centre (where permitted) still has to ensure there’s a good venting index for the day, follow the Open Burning Smoke Control Regulations, and use safe burning practices. They should also check with local fire authorities for local restrictions or regulations.

Anyone found in contravention of the remaining prohibitions may be fined anywhere from $1,150 to $100,000, or face a year in jail.

A person could also be ordered to pay the costs of firefighting if a fire gets out of control as well as the value of resources damaged or destroyed by the wildfire.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

First Energy Metals set to start gold exploration work in the West Kootenay

The work will be conducted at two of its sites near Nakusp and Nelson

Nelson skateboarders charged with assaulting Trail police officer

Incident happened at the skate park in Trail

RDCK closes all indoor recreational facilities until at least August 18

The district said closures are necessary to meet financial plan and to deliver safe programming

Flooding: Why the RDCK ordered hundreds of properties evacuated

All evacuation orders have now been rescinded

Broadwater Road residents allowed to return home after evacuation order

Area near Castlegar evacuated due to flooding risk

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

Bateman program encourages people to sketch outside, connect with nature

#MyNatureSketch initiative encourages Canadians to become ‘bright-eyed three year olds’

Be cautious expanding COVID-19 bubble, Dr. Bonnie Henry tells B.C.

Senior homes stay off-limits as schools, businesses reopen

Most Read