The Kokanee Creek fire in August. Photo: Eva Anandi Brownstein

LETTER: Fund wildfire suppression the same as municipal fire departments

From reader Marc Heroux

This newby to the Koots is confused about British Columbians’ mixed messages on fires. It was OK for a 60-foot-wide slash that I witnessed burning completely unattended in 30-degree heat during the May long weekend 20 feet from a Retallack forest. But have a campfire, attended in a contained steel firepit by a lake and I’m threatened with a fine for this might grow into an unattended 60-foot-wide slash fire?

Wow. How am I supposed to read this … and still give fire wardens, fire police and policy makers all the credibility they need to keep intelligent people onboard. Believe me I want to make our fire suppression leaders’ job easy and obstacle-less but something doesn’t jive here within me.

It seems that the campfire ban and ensuing motorized vehicle ban is reflective not of an annually well managed preventive strategy but ultimately reflective of a lack in resources. Fair enough. Old school approaches always precede new school.

The trend as in other sectors seems to be “let the masses be the pressure relief.” Hence as long as fire suppression leaders accept that their mandate’s main obstacle is budgetary, that they’ll never get enough money to have a well oiled fire suppressing machine then naturally it will go from campfire ban to motorized vehicle ban to outright everybody is banned from the bush in B.C. every summer. Forever.

Fire departments across Canada ensure that local fire halls are filled up with manpower and fire trucks. With their four-minute (or whatever) response. Every year. Every municipality.

It’s time to fund the wildfire suppression teams in exactly the same way. For all of B.C. Every summer. Make sure that every region has all the manpower and all the equipment and aircraft and latest in strategic advances to keep everyone safe. Any and all new fires are completely under control within 24 hours or whatever amount of time.

People deserve fire suppression, not people suppression.

Marc Heroux

Nelson

Just Posted

Nelson firefighter wage negotiations in year six

Firefighting is an essential service, so strikes are illegal

EcoSociety asks city to become 100 per cent renewable

The plan would have Nelson ditch fossil fuels by 2050

Finding support at Community Connect

The 10th annual event offered free services, clothing and food on Saturday

RDCK calls for reversal of Sinixt extinction

The board opposed a land transfer to the Westbank First Nation this week

Nelson city council to update banner policy

Council will revisit the wording of the policy at its December meeting

RDCK holds open house on proposed boat launch

RDCK hosted an open house at Blewett Elementary to discuss plans for a boat launch at Taghum Beach

LVR Bombers volleyball team off to provincials

The senior girls’ squad secured a spot with a win over Trail last week

Winter kicks off in Nelson

Over 30 events are set to celebrate the snowy season

Man pleads guilty to Leafs recycling depot theft

Dezmond Waggoner had been charged with theft over $5,000

Education minister blasts Chilliwack school trustee on gender issues

Fleming calls Neufeld’s behaviour ‘shameful’ and ‘unacceptable’

Most Read