Burning Information – Think Before You Burn


Although fire bans have not yet been imposed in the region, residents are urged to use extreme caution if they decide to have open fires given the unseasonably warm and dry weather. “Fires can have devastating impacts upon communities; the mass evacuations and destruction in Fort MacMurray are a sober and prime example,” says Andrew Bellerby, Regional Fire Chief for the RDCK.

“Please don’t burn unless absolutely necessary and if you still insist on having a fire, make sure you have plenty of extinguishing devices available.” Never, ever leave a fire unattended or toss out cigarette butts.

Those residents who insist on having open fires are asked to keep the following points in mind:
• The type of material to be burned (only burn organics—no plastics, toxins, etc.)
• The size of the area to be burned
• Wind direction and strength
• Establish fuel/fire breaks and guards
• Have fire suppression (sprinklers, hoses)
• Make sure the fire is monitored at ALL times
• Ensure that the fire is extinguished
• If a fire spreads beyond control, contact your local fire department immediately.

The public is encouraged to attend Disaster Day on Hall Street in Nelson on Saturday, May 7th to learn more about emergency preparedness, wildfire mitigation, Fire Smart principles, and a number of other valuable topics. Grab a free hotdog and meet your local first responders who work hard to keep our communities safe!

From Alanna Garrett,  Emergency Preparedness:

Individual Preparedness – Grab ’n’ Go Kit 

Food and Water Tools

  • Water (4 litres per person per day and pets) Flashlight and Batteries
  • Food (for 3 days, that does not need refrigeration) Portable Radio and Batteries
  • Infant Items-Diapers, Bottles, Canned Milk & Food Wrench (shutting off valves)
  • Pet Items-Food, Water, Leash, Kennel Rope, 6 metres
  • Manual Can Opener
  • Duct Tape
  • Paper or Plastic Plates, Utensils
  • Multi-Blade Knife
  • Alternate Cooking Source, with Fuel
  • Candles/Holder/Matches
  • Shovel

Health Safety

  • First Aid Kit Whistle
  • First Aid Manual Emergency Blanket/Sleeping Bag
  • Medication (3 Day Supply)
  • Sturdy Shoes
  • Eye Glasses / Contacts and Solution
  • Work Gloves
  • Dentures
  • Lg. Garbage Bags (Rain Protection and waste disposal)
  • Personal Hygiene Items – Tooth Brush
  • Toilet Tissue, Anti-Bacterial Wipes
  • Water Purification Tablets
  • Clothing- 3 Day Supply, suitable for the season

Important Papers Miscellaneous

  • Insurance Papers  (scan/digital photos)
  • Map/Visitor’s Guide
  • Copies of Personal Identification/Passport Extra House and Car Keys
  • Family Documents/Photo Album
  • Numbers for RCMP, Fire and Ambulance Cell Phone/Charger (do not use 911 in a large-scale disaster)
  • Cash
  • Name and Number of your Out of Area Contact(s)
  • Paper and Pencil
  • Memory stick for Important Documents
  • Tent
  • Documents / photos of home (before/after)
  • Children’s Toys
  • Playing Cards

Emergency Preparedness Websites

  • PreparedBC www.preparedbc.ca
  • BC Wildfire Information www.bcwildfire.ca  
  • Regional District Central Kootenay www.rdck.bc.ca
  • BC Wildfire Public Information Line: 1-888-336-7378 press 3 for Kootenay Information
  • To Report a Wildfire: 1-800-663-5555   or  *5555 on most cell phones
  • Tune into local Radio Stations for current emergency information.
  • Evacuation Orders and Alerts go to www.EmergencyInfoBC.ca
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About ingrid

Ingrid has been the owner and editor of The East Shore Mainstreet newspaper since 2002. She lives and works out of her home in Gray Creek alongside her husband Juergen and children Zoe and Luka.

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