We now are well into fire season and conditions are still challenging. Fire Danger ratings temporarily settled down after a week of steady rain, but have already climbed back to extreme risk, and causing restrictions to high risk activities. Rain is forecast, but overall much more is needed to be finally on the safe side.
In the Wildfire Regulation, high risk activities mean each of the following:
(As per Wildfire Regulation consolidated July 13, 2006)
(a) mechanical brushing;
(b) disk trenching;
(c) preparation or use of explosives;
(d) using fire- or spark-producing tools, including cutting tools;
(e) using or preparing fireworks or pyrotechnics;
(f) grinding, including rail grinding;
(g) mechanical land clearing;
(h) clearing and maintaining rights of way, including grass mowing;
(i) any of the following activities carried out in a cutblock excluding a road, landing, roadside work area or log sort area in the cutblock:
(i) operating a power saw;
(ii) mechanical tree felling, woody debris piling or tree processing, including de-limbing;
(iv) portable wood chipping, milling, processing or manufacturing;
(v) skidding logs or log forwarding unless it is improbable that the skidding or forwarding will result in the equipment contacting rock;
(vi) yarding logs using cable systems;
We were spared in a week of nail-biting thunderstorms and incurred only a few strikes, which were immediately and thankfully extinguished by BCWS initial attack crews. Neighbouring Community Forests and Forest Licencees were less fortunate and our thoughts are with the communities threatened and impacted by fires. As temperatures remain above 30 degree Celsius for the foreseeable future and little rain is in sight, we are questioned every day by concerned residents when the ‘bush will finally shut down’.
Public education resulting in informed decision making are preferred solutions to regulatory enforcement.
You can find BCWS bulletins here: http://bcfireinfo.for.gov.bc.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/News.asp
We thank everyone for exercising a high degree of caution in our backcountry at this precarious time. Please remain vigilant to any sign of fire on the landscape, and report to 1 800 663-5555 or *5555 on a cell.