Cool weather helps contain wildfires
By Colten Kamlade, Staff reporter
If you have missed roasting marshmallows over a fire, this week might be your last chance before the cold weather sets in.
The campfire ban for the Coastal Fire Centre, a region that includes Metro Vancouver, was lifted last week. Though this might be cause for celebration, there are still several restrictions on what you can and cannot do. Open burning—which includes fireworks and firecrackers, sky lanterns, binary exploding targets, and burn barrels or burn cages—is still prohibited.
According to BC Wildfire Service, the cooler weather that has finally replaced the summer heat has allowed firefighting crews to make solid progress against many of the fires. Moreover, precipitation along the coast has lowered the risk of wildfires, allowing for more lenient restrictions.
The air quality in all regions has also greatly improved. A BC Wildfire Service chart shows low health risk across the board. This may be a welcome respite for those who struggle with asthma or other breathing complications.
The remaining wildfires are mostly located in the Southeast Fire Centre. However, the Plateau Fire, the largest fire in BC history, is located in the Cariboo Fire Centre. Thankfully, because of how much land was burned this year, it is likely that next summer’s fire season will be less severe. The total number of fires burning this year was, surprisingly, not much more than the average. It was the number of hectares burned that contributed to this being the worst wildfire season in BC’s history.
Though the wildfire season is coming to a close, there are still many who are being deeply affected by it. The BC Wildfire Service website says that forest fire prevention is a “shared responsibility between the public, business, local governments and the Province.”