Summerland firefighters extinguish abandoned campfire

While no campfire bans are in place, fire department urges campers to use caution

Summerland firefighters were called early Friday morning to extinguish an abandoned campfire on Bathville Road at the Princeton-Summerland Road.

The call came in at 6:44 a.m. and the fire was extinguished quickly, said Rob Robinson, Summerland’s deputy fire chief.

Robinson added that abandoned campfires are an ongoing problem during the warmer months.

Campfires are currently permitted, but fire bans may be put in place during the summer.

READ ALSO: Summerland rescinds campfire ban

READ ALSO: Worst may be over for ‘B.C.’s worst fire season’

At present, there are no fire bans in place in the region under the Kamloops Fire Centre’s jurisdiction, which includes Summerland and the South Okanagan.

Last year, during a hot and dry season, Summerland had a fire ban in place from July 20 until Sept. 14. In 2017, Summerland imposed a campfire ban from July 3 until Sept. 22.

The last two years have had the worst fire seasons in British Columbia’s history.

In 2018, a total of 2,068 fires burned 1,334,183 hectares provincewide. In the Kamloops Fire Centre’s region, 425 wildfires destroyed 54,305 hectares. These fires included the Mount Conkle fire and the Mount Eneas fire, which both resulted in evacuation orders and alerts for parts of Summerland.

In 2017, there were 1,266 wildfires reported in British Columbia, burning 1,216,053 hectares.

According to the Kamloops Fire Centre, the present fire risk in Penticton and the surrounding area is at 3 or a moderate danger rating.

So far this year, a total of 105 wildfires have burned provincewide, destroying 527 hectares. In the Kamloops Fire Centre’s region, 22 fires have burned 179 hectares.

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