Off-road vehicle restrictions still in effect & more Forest Service road closures in the Southeast Fire Centre

CASTLEGAR BC – The BC Wildfire Service is reminding the public that the operation of off-road vehicles (ORVs) and all motorcycles for recreational purposes on Crown land continues to be prohibited throughout the Southeast Fire Centre.

Many parts of the southern Interior are experiencing a prolonged drought and there is currently minimal rain in the forecast for this region.

Given the number of fires currently burning in B.C., the aggressive behaviour of current wildfires and lightning in the forecast, the prevention of human-caused fires is paramount.

Jeeps, trucks or other “on-highway” vehicles must remain on constructed or defined road surfaces. The road surface must consist of a mineral soil or mixed gravel/mineral soil surface that is clear of grass, wood debris or any other flammable organic material across the entire road surface. Drivers are not allowed to go off-road in such vehicles while this prohibition is in effect.

The prohibition of off-road vehicles and on-highway vehicles does not apply to private lands or national parks. It also does not apply to emergency responders or to agriculture or commercial/industrial users who operate vehicles for farming, emergency response or business purposes.

With bow-hunting season scheduled to begin on Friday, Sept. 1, and rifle hunting season on Sept. 10, registered guides and outfitters are advised that the off-road vehicle prohibition does not apply to them while they’re using ORVs for business purposes. Such business purposes would include activities such as transporting supplies, setting up camps and general preparations for hunting operations. However, permitted ORV activities do not include guided clients using ORVs to hunt or gain access to the backcountry.

The BC Wildfire Service is continually monitoring conditions and this ORV prohibition may be expanded or rescinded as needed. It will remain in place until the public is otherwise notified.

Anyone found in contravention of this off-road vehicle prohibition may be issued a violation ticket in the amount of $767. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

To report an off-road violation, call the Report all Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) line at 1 877 952-7277.

The Southeast Fire Centre extends from the U.S. border in the south to the Mica Dam in the north and from the Okanagan Highlands and Monashee Mountains in the west to the B.C.-Alberta border in the east. The Southeast Fire Centre includes the Selkirk Natural Resource District and the Rocky Mountain Natural Resource District.

To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call *5555 on a cellphone or 1 800 663-5555 toll-free. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: www.bcwildfire.ca

You can also follow the latest wildfire news:

* On Twitter: http://twitter.com/BCGovFireInfo

* On Facebook: http://facebook.com/BCForestFireInfo

Forest service road closures in Southeast Fire Centre

CRANBROOK – Due to recent wildfire activity in the Southeast Fire Centre, the BC Wildfire Service has closed three forest service roads near active fires to help protect public safety and assist firefighting operations.

Lamb Creek wildfire:

* As of the afternoon of Aug. 30, 2017, the Lamb Creek wildfire (about five kilometres northwest of the community of Moyie and 18 kilometres southwest of Cranbrook) covered about 60 hectares.

* Thirty-four personnel are on site building fire guards with the assistance of heavy equipment, airtankers and helicopters.

* The Lamb Creek Forest Service Road has been closed, starting at the 1.5-kilometre mark of the Mineral and Lamb Creek Forest Service Road to the Whitney and Irishman Creek Forest Service Road junction.

* A map of the affected area is available online: http://ow.ly/SnGm30eNyMn

* The area restriction for Moyie Lake that was implemented on Aug. 29 remains in place.

Mount King George wildfire:

* As of the afternoon of Aug. 30, 2017, the Mount King George wildfire (about 49 kilometres northeast of Invermere) covered about 100 hectares.

* The Palliser Forest Service Road has been closed starting at the 54.25-kilometre mark.

* A map of the affected area is available online: http://ow.ly/iRjr30eNC07

Quinn Creek wildfire:

* As of the afternoon of Aug. 30, 2017, the Quinn Creek wildfire (east of the Top of the World Provincial Park and about 34 kilometres northwest of Sparwood) covered about 1,282 hectares.

* Seventy-two personnel are working on this fire with the assistance of heavy equipment and a helicopter.

* The Quinn Creek Forest Service Road has been closed, starting at the 60-kilometre mark at the Bull River Junction Forest Service Road.

* A map of the affected area is available online: http://ow.ly/2Qp430eN86M

The Southeast Fire Centre extends from the U.S. border in the south to the Mica Dam in the north and from the Okanagan Highlands and Monashee Mountains in the west to the B.C.-Alberta border in the east. The Southeast Fire Centre includes the Selkirk Natural Resource District and the Rocky Mountain Natural Resource District.

To report a wildfire or open burning violation, call *5555 on a cellphone or 1 800 663-5555 toll-free. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, visit: www.bcwildfire.ca

You can also follow the latest wildfire news:

* On Twitter: http://twitter.com/BCGovFireInfo

* On Facebook: http://facebook.com/BCForestFireInfo