Chief Charlie Boyte's report for March 2010

Michael Boyle

Typically, in March, residents like to get a jump on spring cleaning out in the yard. And, many of you take advantage of the fact that burning permits are not normally required until April 1st.

It is important to keep in mind, however, that burning permits may be required ahead of April 1st if the fire rating increases. Such a development is a possibility given how mild it has been lately.

The best way to stay on top of the situation is to check the upper left hand panel of this website. The fire rating is posted along with notification if permits are required. When burning permits are required our new website allows you to apply and pay online simply by clicking on “Fire Permits” in the navigation bar on the right side of the screen. If this online process does not suit you, just drop by Fire Hall #1 and apply in person.

Please, when burning, you must adhere to the following regulations: The burning of hand-piled woody debris can be no larger than two meters (six feet) in diameter and one meter (three feet) high. The burn pile must be located at least 10 meters (33 feet) from a building or propane tank, fences, grass or trees.

You must ensure a competent person supervises the fire at all times, and that you have adequate equipment to keep the fire under control. You are liable for any damage caused by a fire you light.

Please be considerate of neighbours and extinguish your fire if the smoke is impacting them. A cause of too much smoke is the burning of green debris and leaves and it can be very harmful to someone with respiratory problems. Remember, as Fire Chief, I can order fires to be extinguished if the smoke poses a hazard to other residents. It is best to cover your green debris or leaves with a tarp to allow them to dry before burning.

As well, you should not burn recyclables, tires, plastic, drywall, paint or paint products, treated lumber, asphalt products, rubber, fuel, lubricant or containers, tar paper, or manure.

On the emergency response front, we continue to experience call volumes in excess of 200 a year. The challenges our dedicated volunteers face can be daunting and complex and training to meet those challenges never stops.

This spring Deputy Chief Mike Dine has organized a National Fire Protection Association Fire Officer 1 training program for six officers and two fire fighters. This program will be delivered under the auspices of the Vancouver Island Rescue Academy and will be accredited through Vancouver Island University.

The program will be delivered over the next three months and represents a huge commitment of time, including more than 80 hours of classroom work, 21 chapters of material and a minimum of 25 hours of homework.

At the end of the day our members do all this training to ensure you and your loved ones are as safe and secure as possible. Our motto is: “Volunteers serving the community.” I think our 45 emergency responders, backed by 58 support crew, are doing a great job in meeting that goal.

Forest Fire Threat Level

Burning is permitted
No permit is required
Regulations apply


Paul Hutcheson

First Responder
Support Crew

PIFR Members Only

For any Emergency:

call 911


250 629-3321


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