Campfire During a Fire Ban? What You Need To Know First

How do you enjoy a warm campfire during a fire ban or restriction?

We all want to be able to enjoy the outdoors for many years to come, but each summer, wildfires threaten our BC forests.

If you’re heading out camping, or RVing, you might be thinking, “I want to be keep our forests safe, stay legal, but still enjoy my camping experience.”

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We know it really doesn’t feel right camping without a fire, so how exactly do you follow the laws and still have a great time, when campfires are restricted? Great news! Usually, unless conditions warrant otherwise, the use of portable stoves or portable campfire apparatuses (that follow a few simple rules) are allowed during fire restrictions! This way, you can still get that authentic campfire experience, without compromising the forest around you.

In order to be legal for use during fire restrictions, your portable campfire apparatus MUST follow 3 points:

  1. Burns liquid or gaseous fuel designed to provide ambiance and heat.
  2. Must be CSA or ULC approved (appropriate stickers or label must be on unit)
  3. Flame length must not exceed 15 centimeters / 6 inches

When using the campfire apparatus, you are required to:

  • ƒ Operate the apparatus as specified by the manufacturer
  • ƒ Take reasonable precautions to ensure the fire is contained
  • ƒ Take immediate action to carry out fire control and report the fire if it does escape
  • ƒ Turn the unit off when not attended

If a device is placed on the ground you must:

  • ƒ Place the unit on mineral soil, gravel, sand or a non-combustible surface
  • ƒ Maintain an adequate fire guard around the device, free of flammable materials.

Want to know more about current bans or restrictions near you? Visit the Fire Prohibitions and Area Restrictions page of the Ministry of Forests Wildfire Management Branch today!

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Unfortunately, many commercially available propane campfires are NOT CSA or ULC approved, and are not fully adjustable (so you can’t reduce the flame height to comply with the law). So it’s really important to do your homework when purchasing a portable propane campfire and ask LOTS of direct questions – otherwise you could very well be camping without a fire!

A very helpful resource to help you find the perfect portable propane campfire is Campfire Compare! This site has 11 of the top brands and looks at 10 features that you should consider when purchasing (such as the CSA/ULC approval), and is a great place to start doing your homework.


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