Union Bay Volunteer fire department. Photo via website.

Union Bay Volunteer fire department. Photo via website.

Comox Valley Regional District fire departments enact high-risk activities fire ban

The Comox Valley Regional District’s rural fire departments have enacted their high-risk activities bylaw.

This ban applies to all fire protection areas within the Comox Valley other than Courtenay, Comox, and Cumberland.

In support of this ban, the CVRD will be following provincial regulations. The high-risk activities ban takes effect immediately.

“We have had a very hot dry summer so far, and being at it is so early on in the season we need to work together to protect our community, property and natural landscapes,” said Oyster River fire Chief Bruce Green. “Within all areas of the Comox Valley including Hornby and Denman Islands all high-risk fire activities are now banned until further notice. This ban expands on the previous campfire ban. As well, a smoking ban is still in effect within all CVRD regional parks.”

This ban will include all high-risk activities that can produce a spark and is done in a combustible area such as on or near the forest floor or grassy area.

The CVRD bylaws and the Wildfire Act define “high risk activities” as:

• Mechanical brushing (example: industrial-scale brushing)

• Disk trenching (example: mechanical preparation of logged site)

• Preparation or use of explosives (example: blasting)

• Using fire- or spark-producing tools, including cutting tools (example: cutting torches, metal grinders)

• Using or preparing fireworks or pyrotechnics (example: fireworks display)

• Grinding, including rail grinding (example: angle grinder)

• Mechanical land clearing (example: excavator or skidder logging or digging out stumps)

• Clearing and maintaining rights of way, including grass mowing (example: commercial right of way mowing; BC hydro brushing. Not residential lawn mowing)

Any of the following activities carried out in a cutblock excluding a road, landing, roadside work area or log sort area in the cutblock:

• Operating a power saw (example: cutting firewood off a road in a combustible area)

• Mechanical tree felling, woody debris piling or tree processing, including de-limbing (example: logging activity or cutting firewood off a road in a combustible area)

• Welding (example: any welding off a road)

• Portable wood chipping, milling, processing or manufacturing (example: these activities when done outside of an industrial worksite within a fire protection district)

• Skidding logs or log forwarding unless it is improbable that the skidding or forwarding will result in the equipment contacting rock (example: logging activity)

• Yarding logs using cable systems (example: any logging activity that uses cable yarding equipment)

The ban will cover all CVRD Electoral Area fire departments including:

Oyster River Fire Department

Fanny Bay Fire Department

Hornby Island Fire Department

Union Bay Fire Department

Denman Island Fire Department

ALSO: Comox Valley fire departments send personnel, equipment to Interior B.C. to help fight wildfires

Comox Valleyfire ban