Wildfire prevention

Current fire restrictions

Conditions are dry and the Kelowna Fire Department reminds everyone to help by observing fire restrictions. In Kelowna, campfires and outdoor wood burning are never allowed within city limits at any time. 

Kelowna beaches and parks are smoke-free. The Parks & Public Spaces Bylaw smoke-free bylaw prohibits smoking in all Kelowna parks, including beaches, trails, playgrounds, sports fields and stadiums. This includes prohibiting the use of e-cigarettes and cannabis in parks and public spaces.

Open burning season is currently not allowed, the season closed on April 30. Alternatives to open burning includes the free agricultural chipping program for orchard wood waste and the new Mow/Chip/Rent-It Rebate program offered through the Regional Air Quality Program.

The Kamloops Fire Centre has issued fire ban restrictions which are now in effect (June 12 – Oct.15, 2019) for all Crown and private land outside of local fire jurisdictions. Learn more about the Provincial Kamloops Fire Centre fire restrictions at bcwildfire.ca.

To report a wildfire call the BC Wildfire Centre at 1-800-663-5555 or dial *5555 on a cell.

Introduction to FireSmart

Community Wildfire Protection Plan

Updated in 2016, the Community Wildfire Protection Plan sets out fuel treatments and recommendations for future community planning to reduce wildfire risk.

Wildland-Urban Interface Fires

FireSmart Priority Zones

Research has shown that a house with both a fire resistant roof and a FireSmart zone surrounding it is 85 percent more likely to survive a wildfire than one that is not so prepared. 

Here are some tips that will help you improve your level of fire protection. Your home need not burn.  

  1. If you are replacing your roof, choose a Class A or fire resistant product. Your roof is the most vulnerable part of your house in a wildfire because of its large size and its susceptibility to flying embers (firebrands).
  2. Dead pine needles are fuel. Keep them off your roof, out of your gutters and away from the foundation of your house.
  3. Prune your shrubs, removing all dead branches. De-limb trees up to 2-3 metres from the ground. Take the green waste to a local disposal site.
  4. If branches are hanging over your roof, trim them back. Then clear your roof of leaf or needle litter.
  5. Keep your lawn mowed and watered, as fire moves quickly through dry grass and weeds.
  6. Store firewood at least 10 metres from your house, especially during fire season.  

For more information, download the  FireSmart manual

FireSmart - demonstration house

The Kelowna Fire Department has done some work to the caretaker’s house and property at the top of Knox Mountain Park to provide  a real demonstration of ideal conditions to mitigate fire risk. The program is aimed to inform anyone living in wildland or urban interface areas about the steps they can take to prepare their house and property to reduce the risk of wildfire. An interpretive sign  has been placed on-site as a visual guide on tips that can reduce fire risk for anyone living in an urban interface area.

Priority Zone 1 (within 10 meters of the building - the most critical area to consider for fire protection)

FireSmart Poster

  • Shrubs, trees, deadfall, unnecessary storage and woodpiles removed
  • Keep grass watered and mowed
  • The Caretaker’s house has had a meter of landscape rock added next to the house
  • Trees that remain have been pruned at least 2 meters up from the ground

Priority Zone 2 (from 10 to 30 meters from the building)

  • Trees pruned and thinned around all buildings/structures on property

Priority Zone 3 (from 30 to 100 meters and beyond from the building)

  • Trees in the park have been thinned and ladder fuels removed