Delta raised its fire danger rating to high on July 5. (James Smith photo)

Delta raises fire danger rating to high

The move coincides with a campfire ban for the coastal region

In response to the recent hot and dry weather, the Corporation of Delta raised its fire danger rating to high on Thursday.

The agricultural burning ban remains in effect, and all residential backyard fires, campfires and open cooking fires (except for briquette and propane barbecues) remain banned year-round in all areas of Delta.

Burning any combustible materials without a fire permit can result in a minimum $300 fine. If the fire department has to be called out, it will cost those responsible $400 per hour after the first hour.

The Corporation is also asking residents and visitors to use caution when smoking and ensure that cigarettes and matches are fully extinguished and disposed of in a metal or glass receptacle. Smoking is prohibited all municipal parks and open spaces, and comes with a $200 fine.

The move coincided with a campfire ban throughout the coastal region, including the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, sea-to-sky area and the Sunshine Coast.

Related: Coastal region fire ban begins Thursday

The ban extends to category 2 and 3 open fires, and includes the use of tiki torches, fireworks, firecrackers, sky lanterns, burning barrels or burning cages of any size or description. Fires burning woody debris in outdoor stoves and the use of binary exploding targets are also prohibited.

Like in Delta, the ban does not cover cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.

Smoking is only permitted on registered campsites or in private vehicles. However, if a cigarette butt flicked out the window starts a fire, expect a $575 fine.

The fine for ignoring a fire ban is $1,150. If the fire causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be subject to a penalty of up to $100,000 and ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

If you see a fire anywhere, call 911. To report any unauthorized activity in Delta that poses a risk of fire, call the Delta Police Department’s 24-7 non-emergency line at 604-946-4411.

– with files from Ashley Wadhwani