Caution urged with fire use right now

Fire danger rating for the Burns Lake is currently moderate to high.

Many regions of the province are seeing unseasonably high temperatures and dry conditions, and the long-term weather outlook for B.C. suggests that temperatures will continue above normal this summer.

This recent weather trend of hot and dry conditions has caused forest fuels to become very flammable.

“The fuels will likely remain flammable until we receive significant precipitation,” said Olivia Pojar, Information Officer for the Northwest Fire Centre.

The fire danger rating for the Northwest Fire Centre is currently moderate to high, which means that the fire risk is serious – new fires may start easily and burn vigorously, causing challenges to fire suppression efforts.

Although there are currently no fire prohibitions in the Northwest Fire Centre, Pojar urges public to take extreme caution with all burning activities.

“Seasonal lightning is occurring in some areas of the province, and preventable human-caused fires drain vital resources from response to lightning-caused wildfires,” she said.

While in Prince George recently, getting a first-hand update on the Little Bobtail Lake wildfire, Premier Christy Clark also reminded the public to do their part to prevent wildfires.

“Every summer, the risk of fire increases,” said Clark. “With many parts of the province facing unseasonably warm and dry weather, that risk increases even more, putting people’s homes and lives at risk; please be mindful and take extra care with your campfires and barbecues.”

Premier Clark was accompanied by John Rustad, MLA for Nechako Lakes.

“Given the hot and dry conditions in this region, please remain vigilant and immediately  report any wildfire that you see,” said Rustad.

The Little Bobtail Lake wildfire – the first major wildfire of 2015 – burned over 13,000 hectares. Ground crews, supported by helicopters, airtankers and heavy equipment operators, worked around the clock to control the fire and protect homes, infrastructure, forests and grasslands.

On May 15, the Wildfire Management Branch responded to a four-hectare human-caused fire on the Hannay Forest Service road, approximately 30 km east of the community of Burns Lake. Approximately 12 Wildfire Management Branch personnel and 15 industry personnel responded to this fire. Airtankers and heavy equipment supported crews on the ground. Smoke, flames and firefighting aircrafts were visible from Hwy. 16, east of Burns Lake