Campfire bans are not being lifted in Enderby, Armstrong, Spallumcheen, BX and Silver Star, despite Vernon lifting the ban Sept. 10. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

Extreme wildfire risk sparks Okanagan campfire bans

Dry lightning, area wildfires, extreme heat a concern

Effective at 4 p.m. today (Friday, July 29) campfires will be prohibited across the Regional District of Central Okanagan. The fire ban will remain in place until the public is otherwise notified.

It encompasses the City of West Kelowna, District of Lake Country, District of Peachland, Westbank First Nation and the Ellison, Joe Rich, North Westside and Wilson’s Landing fire service areas in the Central Okanagan East and West Electoral Areas.

Campfires are never allowed in the City of Kelowna.

The City of Vernon has also implemented a fire ban, effective at the same date and time.

The following activities are prohibited and apply to all public and private lands in Vernon and RDCO:

• Campfires

• Discarding burning substances near combustible material

• Open air burning

• Fireworks

• Sky lanterns

• Tiki torches and similar kinds of torches

• Burn barrels or burn cages

• Chimineas

Non-compliance with the fire ban may result in fines up to $1,000 through the city’s municipal bylaws. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

The above prohibitions do not apply 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, so long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres.

To report a fire within the city, call 911 immediately. To report a wildfire, call the BC Wildfire Service at 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

READ MORE: Wildfire service responding to new blazes in North Shuswap and North Okanagan

READ MORE: Vernon breaks 88-year-old heat record


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