The recent extreme heat has Tri-Cities fire departments issuing outside cooking bans.
After three consecutive days of the fire danger rating having been extreme, Coquitlam has declared a ban on barbecues in city parks Tuesday unless with a permit which can be obtained through the city's fire prevention division.
Some covered picnic areas and hard surfaces in Blue Mountain, Cottonwood, Mackin and Town Centre parks and Spani Pool do not require an exemption permit.
In addition, the Coquitlam fire department is relaxing the watering restrictions on some residential and commercial properties adjacent to Mundy Park and along the northern forested boundary of the city. The fire department wants occupants of those properties to ensure the grass, trees and other vegetation are sufficiently hydrated.
A list of the eligible properties are available at coquitlam.ca/seasonalsafety.
Coquitlam's bylaws ban outdoor burning, smoking in parks and littering cigarettes. Anyone caught smoking in a city park faces a $500 fine while littering cigarette butts can result in a five of $150. A city news release said staff and bylaw officers have stepped up patrols of the parks and forested areas during this heat wave.
Earlier Tuesday, Port Moody has issued a ban on the use of outdoor cooking appliances of any kind in city parks, forested areas and public green spaces.
The ban, which went into effect Tuesday (Aug. 7) includes appliances or devices that use propane, charcoal briquettes, or liquid or gas fuels.
"The fire hazard rating has been elevated from high to extreme due to continuing dry and warm weather," said Port Moody fire chief Ron Coulson in a press release. "These conditions significantly raise the risk for accidental fires in wooded and urban areas."
Violations of the ban carries a fine of $250. The city's release also reminds residents and visitors smoking is not permitted in Port Moody parks at any time and open fires are banned year-round in the city.
The Sasamat Fire Department, which covers the Anmore and Belcarra regions, issued a notice that all cooking appliances will be banned in public parks and areas. The ban includes high-risk activity such as use of chainsaws, grass cutting and land clearing.
The following locations in Coquitlam have been pre-approved by the city for barbecue use — propane BBQ only, no open flames using wood or charcoal briquettes — and don't require an exemption permit:
• Blue Mountain Park — covered picnic area on the southeast corner of the park and on asphalted area on the east side of the Scout Hall just outside the covered walkway.
• Cottonwood Park — asphalted basketball court area.
• Mackin Park — asphalted area outside the concession building.
• Spani Pool — under the covered picnic area with concrete pad.
• Town Centre Park — asphalted area on the northwest corner of Percy Perry Stadium.