Fire ban welcomed

Smoke gets in your eyes - and lungs, and sinus cavities

The article entitled, Campfires left burning,” (The News, May 25) proves how our society is dumbing down and putting our forests, our health, our water supply and our tax dollars in jeopardy, not to mention our property and our very lives!

Good ol’ Prince Edward island got their environmental act together in 2002 and surpassed B.C. by a long shot.  Nowhere on PEI can anyone have a fire unless at a registered campground or with a permit along with a darn good reason.

Previously, PEI’ers could burn anything they wanted or take it to the dump.  Farmers were notorious for getting rid of pretty much anything with the cost of one match, thereby saving the cost of fuel and time.

On this island, when I lived in Saanich, backyard burning was only permitted between October and April — the rainy season.  Plus, the burning barrel had to be covered with a metal grate lest any errant embers got airborne.

Last summer in Parksville, I awoke more than one night with smoke invading my bedroom where fresh air was supposed to enter.  I was flanked by three pyrophiles.

After the neighbor left his fire-pit smoldering all night, I confess to probably breaking some bylaw by dousing it out the next morning.

I am so happy when a total coastal fire ban is issued, like last week.

When camping in the USA’s national forests, a campfire protocol is to be followed; one must have a full bucket of water, a shovel, never leave a fire unsupervised and make certain it is out cold when leaving the campsite.

While open fires are romantic and full of ambiance, there is also a need  to maintain this skill for emergency preparedness but in an intelligent manner, with purpose.

This year is one of the worst on record for pollen allergies affecting a wide variety of people, so let’s not add to the mix with needless smoke that could make breathing lethal for some individuals with compromised lung function.

Gord Byers

 

Parksville