Thornhill Fire Chief Issues Warning After Jackpine Flats Grass/Range Fire

John Crawford

The Chief of the Thornhill Volunteer Fire Department is reminding people to be extremely careful with fires, after dealing with a dangerous grass fire in Jackpine Flats yesterday.

Rick Boehm says forested areas around Terrace are drier than he's ever seen them at this time of year -- and it wouldn't take much to get a catastrophic fire started in these conditions.

He said yesterday's fire, which was reported at around 1pm, already covered about 100 square metres when crews arrived on scene, and grew rapidly.

"This was on a large, soon-to-be-developed property and we actually did do a voluntary advisory of the neighbouring properties with large animals to start loading up their animals as a precaution, and that was very successful and received very well by the neighbouring parties -- thankfully we never had to force them to leave," he said.

There were no injuries and no structures damaged.

Crews from the Thornhill and Lakelse Lake fire halls, with help from the BC Wildfire Service, battled the blaze for roughly three hours. 

A Category 2 open fire prohibition is in place within the Nadina, Bulkley and Skeena fire zones of the Northwest Fire Centre.

The definition of a Category 2 open fire is:

* one to two concurrently burning piles no larger than two metres wide by two metres high; or

* the burning of stubble or grass over an area less than 0.2 hectares.

Currently, the Northwest Fire Centre is not restricting the use of the following items, which are usually included in a Category 2 open fire prohibition:

* fireworks, including firecrackers;

* tiki torches and similar torches;

* sky lanterns;

* chimineas, outdoor stoves and other portable campfire apparatuses not CSA approved or ULA approved;

* burn barrels or burn cages of any size or description; and

* binary exploding targets.


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