Yesterday our duty officer responded to a smoldering log at the parking lot at Little Trib. Someone had put out a cigarette on the crispy dry red cedar log that marks the parking area. A nice on-shore breeze fanned the embers and it spread into the log.
Right beside the log is a metal can for disposing of cigarette butts. On the other side of the log is a quarter acre of dry grass. Downwind of the log are really dry scrubby beach shrubs and four homes. When I visited the site today I found 6-8 cigarette butts that looked less than a week old in the grass.
Little Trib beach access is highways land and it is legal to smoke there. However, those logs at the edge of the parking lot border on very dry and flammable private land. Please, if you use that log for a get-together or for just enjoying the view use the metal can for your butts. Perhaps consider moving down onto the gravel beach when smoking. That way if an ember falls onto the ground it won’t light up the dry grass.
Also please let others, who may not be following social media, know the importance of being safe with cigarettes.
Effective noon on July 30 we are implementing restrictions on high risk activities. These activities include chainsaw usage, lawn mowing, brush cutting with metal blades, and land clearing. Nylon string weed trimmers are allowed as they are unlikely to create a spark.
For more information on which activities are allowed and which are restricted please refer to the Wildfire BC page.
If you witness someone engaging in one of the risky activities you can call the Fire Patrol cell phone at 250.703.1792 or the Fire Hall at 250.335.2611. If you choose to inform the operator yourself please be kind. They may not be aware of the restrictions. Entering into a confrontation benefits no one.
Here is what is likely the last update on the fire hall construction. Included is an update on the Superiour Tanker Shuttle Accreditation and the end-of-project financial wrap-up. Click on the image for a pdf.
After a ton of hard work and long hours of studying, Duncan MacCaskill and Rob Lewis have been promoted from Rookie to Firefighter. Duncan returned to us this year after a lengthy absence and Rob joined our department almost two years ago.
The test to be promoted has a multi hour practical component and a 40 question written test. They both demonstrated an outstanding commitment to their training, to the betterment of our department, and to the health and safety of our community.
On behalf of HIFR, and the entire Hornby Island community, I’d like to congratulate Jac Graham, Rob “Louie” Lewis, Albini Lapierre, and Scott Towson for achieving their FR licenses though the Emergency Medical Assistants Licensing Board.
They dedicated themselves to a 40 hour course then did many more hours of practice before challenging both a written and practical exam. I’d also like to thank Paula Courteau for her many hours of prep and for her excellent instruction, and John Heinegg for doing all of the evaluations.
I could not be more proud of the dedication of this group of volunteers to the health and safety of our community.
The most recent news letter from the Coastal Fire Center has a bunch of great information inside. The front page tells us all about the various categories of outdoor fires… What makes a campfire a campfire and what differentiates a category 2 backyard burn from a category 3 slash pile.
Further on in the newsletter they discuss the often talked about ventilation index and how to report a non permitted burn.
Click on the image for a pdf version of the newsletter.
It’s been a pretty dry spring so far and the forest is starting to get a bit crunchy. All backyard burning, other than campfires, will require a permit. Permits are free and we write them on Wednesdays and Saturdays. It requires one of us come to your place to make sure that the pile is safe. You will need to have a hose or other water deliver system on standby and some hand tools to pull the pile apart if required.
Please be kind to your neighbors and only light up your pile when the venting index for Central Vancouver Island is good.
To get your permit call the fire hall at 250.335.2611 and leave a message or talk to the chief.
With all the talk about emergency preparedness that we’ve been seeing lately, I thought I would pass this on to our community:
The BC Cattlemen’s Association has partnered with BC Ag Safe, with funding from Imperial Oil, to put on an “Emergency Management” workshop throughout the province over a nine week period starting February 27th. They will be covering topics such as how to safeguard your operation from emergencies such as fires and floods, how to create a safety plan, what to do in the midst of an emergency and who to contact for assistance and resources after an emergency.
These workshops are open to all agriculture commodity groups, as well as acreage/rural land owners. If you or another representative are planning to attend, please RSVP back to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-573-3611.
Below is a list of the workshop locations and dates, with venues currently being secured.
Tuesday, February 27: Fort St. John 4pm
Thursday, March 1: Vanderhoof 9am
Saturday, March 3: Smithers 9am
Thursday, March 7: Quesnel 9am
Wednesday, March 8: 100 Mile House 9 am
Wednesday, March 14: Kamloops 9am
Wednesday, April 4: Williams Lake 9am
Wednesday, April 11: Cranbrook 9am
Thursday, April 12: Grand Forks 9am
Monday, April 16: Penticton 9am
Tuesday, April 17: Vernon 9am
Wednesday, April 25: Comox 9am
They will be sending out a reminder invite, with the exact address in the next week, but look forward to hearing from you.
After the tsunani warning last night I’ve had a few phone calls from people asking how they can ensure that they are notified of a imminent emergency.
The Comox Valley Emergency Program has a notification system to keep residents and businesses informed in a timely manner. Alerts will be sent to a mobile phone OR via voice message on a landline and can be tailored to the community in which you live. Sign up for it here. If you want to receive alerts relevant to Hornby Island make sure that you select our zone which is Electoral Area A (Baynes Sound – Denman/Hornby Island)”.
If time allowed, the secondary notification would be HIFR driving our five trucks through affected neighborhoods broadcasting the warning over our loudspeakers.