City of Nanaimo urging extreme caution in parks during fire season

Smoking, campfires, barbecues not allowed in city parks, users should be aware of fire hazards

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The city is reminding residents that smoking, campfires and barbecues are not permitted in Nanaimo’s parks.

According to the city, brush fires that occur within the city result from people carelessly throwing cigarettes from car windows or not properly extinguishing them in ashtrays.

Current dry conditions are expected to continue into summer and the city is asking people to be extremely cautious in parks and on trails and other areas that are not irrigated.

“As the weather stays warm and dry, the fire risk increases,” said Karen Fry, Nanaimo Fire Rescue chief, in a press release Monday. “Fires can quickly start and spread in these conditions so we are asking the public to be aware of the risks and be vigilant.”

Propane barbecues, set on low flame, are permitted within approved locations of picnic shelters in Bowen Park and Maffeo Sutton Park or areas where a use permit has been obtained..

“We ask that everyone do their part to make sure Nanaimo’s parks are safe and enjoyable for everyone,” said Richard Harding, city director of parks and recreation, in the press release. “Many of Nanaimo’s parks and trails are not irrigated which means the vegetation is very dry during the warm summer months. However, smoking is not allowed at any time of the year in city parks.”

City bylaws prohibit smoking anywhere on all city managed recreation properties, including trails, parks, beaches and recreation facilities other than in designated smoking areas. Bylaws and RCMP officers can issue fines to anyone caught smoking in parks.

For further details or clarification on propane usage in parks, contact Nanaimo Parks and Recreation at 250-756-5200.

To report a fire in a City of Nanaimo park or trail, please call 911. To report a wildfire, please call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on most cellular networks.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo’s high temperature one of 16 records set across B.C.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo holding at Stage 2 watering restrictions
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