Peace and Fort Nelson districts excluded from campfire ban

The Peace and Fort Nelson fire districts are excluded from a fire ban that comes into effect on Thursday.

Starting at noon, all open burning will be banned throughout the Omineca region of the Prince George Fire Centre, the BC Wildfire Service says.

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The ban — which includes campfires and Category 2 and 3 open burns — applies to the Prince George, Vanderhoof, Fort St. James, and Mackenzie districts.

It does not apply to the Peace or Fort Nelson.

"These steps are being taken due to current weather conditions and the number of fires that the BC Wildfire Service is responding to in the Omineca region," the Wildfire Service says in a bulletin.

"More lightning is in the forecast for the Prince George Fire Centre and firefighting resources must focus on existing fires and new, naturally occurring fires."

Two wildfires of note — 1,800 hectares at Chutanli Lake southwest of Prince George, and 1,600 hectares at Purvis Lake east of Takla Lake — were burning in the Prince George Fire Centre as of Wednesday afternoon.

The fire centre has seen 378 fires since April 1, burning 54,393 hectares.

Anyone found in violation of the prohibition could be fined $1,150, and face a $100,000 fine or jail time if convicted in court.

If a violation causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1-800-663-5555, or *5555 on a cellphone.

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