Campfires, barbecues banned in Vernon parks

No campfires are allowed in Vernon parks.

The City of Vernon has issued a notice that campfires and fire appliances, such as portable barbecues or camp stoves, that use liquefied or solid fuel are prohibited in all city parks and open spaces due to the extreme risk of wildfire in the region.

“Liquefied and solid fuels include, but are not limited to, seasoned wood, charcoal briquettes, propane or natural gas,” said Tanya laing Gahr, communications officer.

“The ban will remain in place until further notice.”

The maximum fine for a fire in a public place is $200. A summary conviction for any infraction in the park could result in a maximum fine of $10,000.

The ban does not extend to barbecues on private property. However, the public is reminded be cautious regarding the extreme conditions in the North Okanagan.

“In extreme conditions, new fires will start easily, spread rapidly and challenge fire suppression efforts,” said Laing Gahr.

“Disposal of lit cigarettes should be done safely using closed containers. Do not park or drive on dry grass, as heat from a vehicle can potentially start a fire. Ensure compost piles are not close to any dry materials that could ignite. Do not leave grass or tree cuttings on the ground that could be potential fuel for fires.”