May 20, 2013 / 2:15 pm
The crew of a Royal Canadian Air Force Cormorant helicopter assisted RCMP and Ground Search and Rescue (GSAR) crews from Chilliwack and Harrison-Kent, to evacuate an injured hiker from the banks near Chehalis River, north of Chilliwack, early morning on Monday, May 20.
The hiker had been walking a narrow trail along the Chehalis, just north of Harrison River, when he fell approximately 100 feet to a rocky outcropping below.
Although GSAR and RCMP were able to locate the man and provide aid, they requested assistance from the Canadian Armed Forces to evacuate the man as the challenging nature of terrain would have made evacuation by ground difficult.
The Cormorant helicopter from 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron, 19 Wing Comox, arrived overhead just after midnight.
“We had excellent communication with the GSAR personnel and we were able to locate the scene quickly,” said Captain Luc Coates, aircraft commander.
“Because of the tall trees and steep terrain, we had to hover quite high and it took a lot of cooperation amongst the crew to ensure we got our Search and Rescue Technicians (SAR Techs) on the ground and the patient hoisted safely.”
After a hoist of 240 feet, the SAR Techs worked with the GSAR team to get the patient into a rescue litter. Once he was on board the Cormorant, he was flown to Vancouver where he was transferred to BC Ambulance in stable condition.
Search and Rescue (SAR) incidents under the federal SAR mandate are defined as “all aircraft incidents and all marine incidents in waters under federal jurisdiction."
With the exception of federally owned National Parks, the overall responsibility for land and inland water search and rescue rests with the provinces, territories and municipalities. The Canadian Armed Forces may, however, provide assistance to land and inland water rescues when possible.
Video submitted by Royal Canadian Air Force, 19 Wing Comox
May 19, 2013 / 11:10 am
A controversial application to open a coal mine in the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island has been rejected as inadequate by the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office.
In a statement issued on May 16, the office said Compliance Energy’s application for the Raven Coal Mine near Fanny Bay "does not contain the required information."
While the EAO left the door open for the company to resubmit the application, the news was welcomed by local environmentalists who have fought the project for years.
“The Environmental Assessment Office has acknowledged the serious gaps in information in this application and sent the company back to the drawing board,” said Torrance Coste, the Wilderness Committee’s Vancouver Island Campaigner.
Coste noted the EAO's 114-page review of the application documented hundreds of deficiencies in the application, including "a lack of consultation with First Nations, insufficient information around local drinking water and air quality impacts, and failure to explain how effects of industrial waste and tailings would be mitigated over the long term."
“The decision serves to highlight this company's utter lack of commitment to the local communities, First Nations and our shared environment, and is just another indication that this mine doesn't belong on Vancouver Island," he said.
May 19, 2013 / 10:33 am
Thousands gathered in Delta Saturday for the opening of a new mosque, now one of the largest houses of worship for the Ahmadiyya Islamic community in the world.
The $8 million Baitur Rahman complex on River Road is 33,000 sq. ft and includes a day care, gym and prayer space.
More than 4,000 from various religious backgrounds attended the opening, including Ahmaddiya Muslim leader Khalif Hadrat Mirza Masroor Ahmed.
"For non-Muslims to attend an Islamic religious function is a clear mark of a tolerant attitude," said Ahmed.
The Ahmadiyya movement was founded in 1889 and has tens of millions of members across more than 200 counties.
The movement, however, has been persecuted as a heretic sect of Islam. An attack of two Ahmadiyyan mosques in Lahore, Pakistan killed 95 and injured more than 100.
"For me to say I'm a Muslim in Pakistan, I could potentially be in jail right now," said Ahmadiyya practitioner Safwan Choudry. Choudry came from Toronto to volunteer at the mosque’s opening.
The mosque hopes to hold interfaith meetings and engage non-religious groups to spread the Khalif’s message of peace and cooperation.
Delta Mayor Lois Jackson was at the event and said the mosque’s opening is important for the city, province and country.
"It's a very basic human offering to people and I'm really hoping the people of Delta will certainly take advantage of that," said Jackson.
May 19, 2013 / 6:04 am
Adrian Dix was inside the Hitching Post Restaurant in Hedley , drinking from a mug stamped with twin six-shooters while outside on the old mining town's main street, with dusk starting to cover the mountaintops, his campaign workers were counting potential seats in what appeared to be a shoe-in win.
How many? Forty-seven? Fifty-three? Maybe even 60 seats.
There's 85 seats in BC legislature, and the feeling, right out there in the open, was an NDP majority was only a few hours away.
The confidence of impending victory for Dix's New Democrats on election night was oozing, overflowing, for the party and seemingly most everyone else, on Monday night, less than 24 hours before the polls closed. It was as if Dix's orange NDP campaign bus was running on a tank filled with over-confidence.
But it ran out of gas at polling booths across BC.
The NDP's unbridled sense that the keys to the gates of power were about to be handed over is similar to the 1996 BC election campaign that saw former premier Gordon Campbell's Liberals running as if they were destined for government. They lost to Glen Clark's New Democrats in the last days with Campbell denying he made a deal with the virtually dead Social Credit party to secure faltering right-wing votes.
Embedded campaign reporters and those who packed the bus last week for the NDP's final day and night's push to Hope, B.C., and beyond were there to witness a victory tour. What they got was a historic campaign crash that saw Dix steer the NDP into the ditch and Christy Clark's Liberals cruise to a fourth term.
"He is a giant egghead," said one disgruntled New Democrat who said the campaign started on a high note but kept sliding downwards as the weeks wore on and Clark's Liberals framed Dix as negative and an economic risk.
"He thought he would win a policy war during an election campaign. That proved to be fatal," said the NDPer who spoke on condition of anonymity. "Adrian kept talking about how he had one (crappy) suit and Christy looks like a million bucks."
Dix frequently mentioned during campaign stops that he had two suits, but noticed on the first day he mixed up his pants and jackets. At one stop, he addressed a Surrey town hall with birthday cake icing stains on his pants and tie. Campaign workers were seen carrying fresh shirts after the cake incident.
As the Dix bus pulled out of Hedley and onto the winding Hope-Princeton highway, the first song out of the exceptionally fine bus speakers was "Come Together" by the Beatles. The irony of the song choice and what was to transpire a few hours down the road was epic.
The bus stopped at the entrance to Manning Park and Dix looked up at the expanse of shimmering stars above him.
"I've got all kinds of Hope," deadpaned Dix as he strode into Hope's Tim Horton's just after midnight and ordered a medium coffee, one milk.
He was greeted by Chilliwack-Hope NDP candidate Gwen O'Mahony, who won a historic byelection in Liberal territory last year.
"Don't say we don't know how to close in this campaign," Dix said. "Today we've got to work one more day to bring change to British Columbia."
Dix reminded the dozen New Democrats out for a late-night snack at Tim's that O'Mahony's Chilliwack-Hope byelection win offered "some real hope for everybody. You can win everywhere."
O'Mahony was among those who lost Tuesday night.
The 24-hour victory lap covered some 1,700 kilometres and was scheduled to make 14 community stops, starting in Courtenay on Vancouver Island and concluding in Dix's own Vancouver-Kingsway riding just as the polls opened.
Kamloops, Williams Lake, Prince George and Penticton were airport stops where Dix met diehard party supporters whom he reminded to work every last minute of the campaign to get out the vote, ending with a rephrased version of the Sam Cooke ballad "A change is going to come" to British Columbia in 24 hours.
But the chain-link, barbwired-topped fences at the airports that formed an ominous barrier between Dix and his supporters did little to foster the impression his campaign was building spontaneous momentum on the journey home.
In Prince George, Dix took reporters' questions and spoke at length about his decision to run a positive, issues-focused campaign, but reporters were hustled onto the waiting plane and left without a chance to file his comments for about two hours when the flight landed in Penticton.
At Williams Lake, Dix was greeted by a supporter who spoke with real excitement, enthusiasm and anticipation of an NDP victory.
"I tell you, the Liberals devastated everybody I know, including myself," said Wayne Potter, a former BC Rail worker. "I've been waiting for 10 years to see this and I tell you, I think it's going to happen and I pray to God when I wake up Wednesday morning it's the NDP and Adrian running this province."
The NDP's John Horgan, who was re-elected in the suburban Victoria riding of Juan de Fuca, likely shared Potter's sense of disappointment and dismay Wednesday morning.
Horgan, who ran for the NDP leadership against Dix in 2011 but is considered one of his strongest supporters, suggested the campaign message to keep things positive and stay out of the gutter politics of the Liberals needs to be deeply re-examined.
"Adrian Dix is a very good friend of mine," said Horgan. "He ran the campaign he wanted to run, and I supported every step of that. Clearly, I was hearing on the doorstep that people wanted to hear more about the Liberal record and we did a bad job of that, there's no question."
Dix allowed the Liberal negative attacks on past New Democrat governments and the NDP's campaign spending promises to take root, and it wasn't until the last week of the campaign Dix started to counter the Liberal messages with examples of their failures, but by then, it was too late, said the disgruntled New Democrat.
Former BC NDP premier Ujjal Dosanjh who later was elected as a federal Liberal, said Dix's decision to take a strong stand against Kinder Morgan in an effort to win Green votes threw the Liberal campaign a life ring.
"This is one of these defining differences that make or break a campaign," Dosanjh said.
The disgruntled New Democrat said party brass and grassroots members now have the next four years to examine why the NDP was on cruise control in the final days of the campaign, working harder on transition teams and victory speeches than considering the significance of having just spent 12 years eating Liberal dust.
May 18, 2013 / 6:00 pm
Police in Costa Rica are investigating after a man from Vancouver was found shot dead in a supposed home invasion in that country.
According to the Judicial Investigation Organization, gunmen entered a home in Escazú southeast of Santa Ana midday Thursday disguised as security guards.
Private investigator Douglas Smith said the intruders presented themselves as security and told the guard that they were there to fix the alarm systems.
The gunmen then tied up the guard and approached the house where 42-year-old Canadian Brad Deering was along with two other men and a woman.
Authorities found Deering dead with three gunshot wounds outside the house after appearing to attempt to escape, investigators said.
The three others in the house with Deering were tied up but were able to escape, Smith said.
Neighbours called police following the incident and the suspects fled the scene.
The OIJ is initially writing up the incident as a standard home invasion, but Smith said he hesitates to agree with that.
“The scuttlebutt seems to be that they were zeroed in on Brad specifically,” he said. “If it’s just a robbery it’s rare they’ll go ahead and do a daylight thing.”
Canadian consular officials are gathering information for the investigation along with Costa Rican authorities.
May 18, 2013 / 8:36 am
A Vancouver printing company believes they have uncovered an international LSD trafficking ring that is shipping drugs using their name.
Over the past six months, JukeboxPrint.com says they received three pieces of mail, which at first glance, appeared to be returned to them because of a wrong address.
But upon closer inspection, operations manager Scott Mills said something was clearly amiss.
The envelopes were printed with low resolution Jukebox logos, and inside, entire paragraphs from the company’s website were lifted and printed on a flyer. But tucked in between the pages were small, square stickers.
"The stickers were a little eerie looking," Mills said. "They had psychedelic pictures on it. They were thicker."
Mills said the company called Vancouver Police, but the last officer they spoke to said the mystery envelopes were just junk mail and advised them to put the letters in the garbage.
But Mills sent the stickers to a lab instead and discovered they were laced with LSD.
The illegal hallucinogen – which is odourless, colourless and tasteless – is often painted onto small pieces of paper that people lick or swallow.
"Our worst fears were realized," Mills said. "It could potentially be a drug smuggling ring going internationally because each of the three envelopes that we got returned were from the States."
The Gastown-based company, which prints and ships business cards and other promotional materials to people and businesses all around the world, says they want people to know they are not shipping LSD.
Mills worries that the printing materials Jukebox sends to its clients could be flagged by international customs.
Meanwhile, Vancouver police now admit it was a mistake to dismiss the company’s concerns.
"We’re taking this very seriously. This may be the tip of the iceberg," said VPD spokesman Sgt. Randy Fincham.
"There may be a small number of packages returned to the company but possibly a larger number reached their intended recipients, whether in the U.S., other areas in Canada or possibly foreign countries."
There is one potential clue found on the envelopes: the cancellation mark applied on the postage stamp indicates the letters were originally mailed from Vancouver, which means whoever stole Jukebox's identity isn't far away.
May 18, 2013 / 8:23 am
The B.C. Supreme Court has ruled that a hydro-electric development in northeastern B.C. should be allowed to proceed without an environmental assessment.
The dispute over the assessment of 10 power generation sites along a 40-kilometre stretch of the Holmes River was launched by a coalition of conservation groups.
The Environmental Assessment Office said it wouldn't conduct a review of the project, but the coalition -- which consists of the Watershed Watch Salmon Society and the David Suzuki Foundation -- asked the court to overturn the decision.
The coalition claimed the assessment was necessary because the 10 sites together would generate more than the 50 megawatts needed to set off the environmental review.
Instead, the court sided with the EAO on Friday, ruling that no assessment is required because each of the plants are considered separate projects with a generating capacity of less than 15 megawatts.
While Holmes Hydro Inc. has said that all 10 power plants must be built to make the project economical, they are actually individual parts that can function independently of each other, the ruling said.
Aaron Hill with Watershed Watch Salmon Society said he believes the project could endanger the chinook salmon population in the Holmes River, but it is hard to know the exact environmental impacts unless an assessment takes place.
"We know what's at stake, but the public doesn't have a chance to fully understand what the likely impacts are going to be, so we lose the public transparency that you get with an environmental assessment," he said.
Justice Nathan Smith concluded that since Holmes Hydro has already spent $2 million on developing its proposal under the assumption that the project can go ahead without an environmental assessment, and would need to rack up additional costs if an assessment is deemed necessary, "the balance of convenience clearly favours Holmes Hydro and I would not grant the relief requested."
Hill said the court decision highlights how weak environmental assessment laws are in B.C.
May 17, 2013 / 8:10 pm
A former British Columbia lieutenant governor appointed five months ago to help implement recommendations from the Robert Pickton inquiry resigned Friday, saying he's been "served with documents" related to a series of lawsuits filed by the children of four murdered women.
But Steven Point's departure raised immediate questions about the explanation both he and the provincial government provided, with the mother of one of Pickton's victims saying Point told her he was considering stepping down more than a month ago and the lawyer involved in the lawsuits denying Point has been formally served with anything.
Point, who was appointed chair an advisory committee last December, said his resignation was prompted by four lawsuits filed earlier this month by children of women whose remains or DNA were found on the serial killer's farm.
"Litigation has been commenced by certain family members of the victims of Pickton, and I have been served with documents that have put me on notice regarding this litigation," Point wrote in a letter to Attorney General Shirley Bond, dated Friday.
Bond released her own statement that said "the plaintiffs have put Mr. Point on notice" that his public comments could become evidence in the civil case. A ministry spokeswoman later said the families sent Point a copy of the statements of claim, which he interpreted as having been "put on notice."
Point was appointed to help oversee the implementation of a report prepared by Wally Oppal, who spent months hearing evidence about the failed police investigations into Pickton and reports of missing sex workers. Oppal's report included 63 recommendations.
Earlier this month, the children of four women filed separate lawsuits against Pickton, his two siblings, the B.C. government and the City of Vancouver, seeking damages for the women's deaths and the botched investigation that failed to prevent them.
A lawyer for the victims' families, Jason Gratl, said neither he nor his clients have ever suggested Point could be dragged into the civil case.
Although he didn't want to be quoted, Gratl was clearly upset with what he perceived as an attempt to blame the children of the women for Point's decision to resign. He provided a copy of the email he sent Point, along with the statements of claim, which made no mention of Point becoming a potential witness.
"I appreciate that neither of you are parties to the action," Gratl wrote in an email to both Point and Oppal, dated May 8.
"But I thought you might be asked to comment on the claims at some point, and it might be of assistance to you if you had a chance to review them first," the email stated.
Michele Pineault, whose daughter Stephanie Lane was among the many women whose remains were found on Pickton's farm, was skeptical of Point's resignation.
Pineault was at an Assembly of First Nations event in Edmonton in early April, which she said was attended by Point and other family members connected to the Pickton case.
"We had dinner, Steven Point was there with all the family members, and told us that he had been thinking about stepping down, that he had family issues and it was a difficult task (chairing the advisory committee)," Pineault said in an interview.
"That was before any lawsuits before any family members, so I don't like the fact that he is now using the backs of the families to step down. He could have done that graciously on his own."
Point did not return email and telephone messages seeking further explanation about his resignation.
Bond, the attorney general, had little to say about Pineault's claims that Point was already considering stepping down.
"Mr. Point's resignation letter speaks for itself," Bond said in a written statement.
May 17, 2013 / 5:16 pm
On the eve of the Victoria Day long weekend, the BC Coroners Service is warning residents to take extreme care near streams and rivers which are currently running much faster and higher than normal.
People can significantly underestimate the force that can be unleashed by a fast-running river, said Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe, and do not realize how different it is from the quiet stream where they regularly swim, raft or paddle.
Three such deaths already have occurred this spring: two young men swept away in Golden Ears Provincial Park, and a young woman who fell into Swift Current Creek near Valemount.
If a river is running quickly, about 15 1/4 centimetres (or six inches) of water can sweep a person downstream, and a little over six-tenths of a metre (or two feet) of water can carry away most vehicles.
Although the bank of a fast-running creek may look stable, such banks are often eroded by the water and can collapse with the added weight of persons standing on them. Moving water or standing pools of water also can contain dangerous debris, so no one should try to walk or drive through them.
The warning comes as the BC Coroners Service releases its newest report into Accidental Drowning Deaths, covering the five-year period from 2008 through 2012. The report looks at a total of 397 deaths over the five-year period.
Of those, 58.7 per cent occurred in the summer months of May through August.
The statistics make clear the danger of mixing alcohol or drugs with water-related activities.
Of all deaths recorded, impairment by alcohol or drugs was a factor in 40.2 per cent of the cases.
Click here to view the full report.
May 16, 2013 / 6:57 pm
The Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team (ERT) has been deployed to Langley to assist in the 19800 block of 50A Avenue where a man has barricaded himself in his residence. Police believe the 27 year old male, who is known to police, may have a firearm.
Langley RCMP were called shortly before 4:00 this afternoon and after an initial assessment the ERT team was called to attend. They have established an inner perimeter while General Duty officers from Langley maintain the external perimeter. Police have taken necessary measures to safeguard other residents in the area by evacuating neighbouring homes.
Langley RCMP is communicating with the male, who is believed to be suicidal, by telephone. Police are attempting to successfully negotiate his peaceful surrender.
Updates will be provided as they become available.
May 16, 2013 / 4:32 pm
The BC RCMP are reminding the public to check the security features of all the bank notes that they receive, including the new polymer series notes.
A small number of counterfeit $100 polymer bills have recently been detected in the Lower Mainland.
The public can protect themselves by checking the security features of their notes or comparing suspicious notes with a genuine note.
“Protecting the economic integrity of Canada is one of the five National strategic priorities for the RCMP” says Sgt Duncan Pound, RCMP Federal Media Relations Officer for British Columbia.
“Crime Prevention is a cornerstone of the RCMP’s overarching approach to law enforcement, and working with the Bank of Canada to help educate the public about the security of Canadian bank notes is vitally important to us.”
Anyone with information about counterfeiting should contact the Federal RCMP at 778-290-4510, or anonymously through Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or www.bccrimestoppers.com
Training materials on counterfeit detection are available by calling the Bank of Canada’s toll-free number at 1 888 513-8212. They can also be accessed or ordered from their website.
Police would like to remind the public to check two or more security features on all bills they receive.
If you come across a bill you believe to be counterfeit, please contact your local police.
May 16, 2013 / 9:33 am
Cowichan Valley school trustees are closing the book on middle schools in that Vancouver Island district.
The closures take effect over the summer.
They come as the board grapples with a $3.7-million shortfall.
In all, six schools will be closed, with Grade 7, 8 and 9 middle school students redistributed to neighbouring elementary or secondary schools.
The district has also imposed an annual 200 dollar fee for students riding the school bus.
Cowichan Valley district Supt. Joe Rhodes blames declining enrolment for the financial crunch, saying time will tell if proposed revisions bring students and parents back to area schools. (CFAX)
May 16, 2013 / 5:00 am
With the May long weekend that typically kicks off the camping season nearly upon us, BC natural resource officers, park rangers and conservation officers will be busy ensuring everyone enjoys a safe and peaceful holiday.
Provincial officials naturally step up their enforcement during the holidays and they will be patrolling Crown land, waterways and recreations sites, while also enforcing forest recreation regulations.
Here is some important information to bear in mind over the long weekend:
- Many campgrounds have specified rules and guidelines. Visitors are asked to comply with the posted rules.
- Gates in provincial parks and some recreation sites are closed at 11 p.m., unless otherwise stated. Only registered campers are allowed in campsites after 11 p.m.
- Excessive noise is not permitted. Please remember that sound can travel far in the open air, especially music and loud talking.
- Liquor consumption is prohibited in parks, with the exception of your own campsite.
- Barbecues must be used on the ground unless barbecue attachments are provided on picnic tables.
- To avoid problems with bears, lock your food in your vehicle at night.Use the garbage containers that are provided and maintain a clean campsite. Never feed or approach bears.
- Designated swimming areas within marker buoys are intended to protect swimmers. All watercraft and water skiers must stay outside the markers.
- Lifeguards are not on duty in BC Parks or recreation sites.
- Visitors can use trails to travel safely through the most interesting and beautiful parts of BC Parks or recreation sites, without damaging sensitive and unique plant and wildlife habitat. Please stay on the trails.
- Always check the Wildfire Management Branch website - www.bcwildfire.ca before heading into the backcountry to find out if any open burning prohibitions are in effect.
- Make sure the campfire is completely extinguished and the ashes are cold to the touch before you leave it unattended for any period of time. Ensure that cigarette butts are properly extinguished in an ashtray and are not tossed away carelessly.
- Campfires cannot be larger than 0.5 metres in height and 0.5 metres in diameter (roughly 11/2 feet by 11/2 feet). You must maintain a one-metre fireguard around the campfire. This is a fuel-free area where all flammable materials (grass, kindling, etc.) have been removed.
- You may be held accountable for damages and fire suppression costs if your negligence results in a wildfire.
- Members of the public can report wildfires or unattended campfires by calling *5555 on a cellphone or by calling 1 800 663-5555 toll-free.
- Most provincial parks are closed to off-road vehicle use unless posted as open.
- Operators of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are reminded that these Vehicles must be insured while being driven on forest service roads.
- Keep vehicles out of sensitive sites that are easily damaged, such as wetlands, grasslands, alpine areas and subalpine environments.
- Failure to comply with regulations could result in a fine of $575 or (in more serious cases involving damage) up to $100,000 and a year in jail.
- Make sure you have a valid angling licence (April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014) and are aware of angling regulations for the waters in your area, including gear and bait restrictions.
- If you are operating a small vessel, ensure that you have your operator's licence with you and be aware of safety regulations for operating small vessels.
Pets must be kept on a leash at all times within provincial parks and in some recreation sites. Pets are not allowed inside park buildings.
May 15, 2013 / 7:17 pm
The body of a second young man who drowned at a park in Maple Ridge, has been recovered.
The 22-year-old and a friend were at a popular swimming hole at Golden Ears Provincial Park when they were swept away by the fast-moving waters on Friday.
Search and Rescue officials recovered the body of an 18-year-old male, but the older one remained missing until Wednesday.
RCMP Cpl. Alanna Dunlop says the loss of the two young men is tragic and affects many people.
The victims' names have not been released.
May 15, 2013 / 4:00 pm
Valemount RCMP say they have recovered a body from a creek, after a women was reported to have fallen.
The call came in around 9 p.m. Tuesday night that a 21-year-old female had fallen into Swift Current Creek, approximately 12.5 kilometres east of the junction of highway 16 and highway 5.
Robson Valley Search and Rescue was called to the area and organized a search of the creek, including areas farther downstream like the Fraser River.
A witness who had been walking along the riverbank found the body on a rocky sand bar in the middle of the creek, but due to the dangerous location rescue teams from McBride and Jasper were called in to recover the body.
No names have been released.
May 15, 2013 / 11:01 am
Beginning at noon today (May 15), a restriction will be placed on the size of open fires in the Kamloops Fire Centre.
This prohibition will apply to all areas of the Kamloops Fire Centre except for the Clearwater and Salmon Arm fire zones, which will be subject to the ban on June 15 when all open burning is prohibited in the area until Oct. 15.
This prohibition does not ban campfires that are a half-metre high by a half-metre wide (or smaller) and does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes.
However the following activities will not be allowed:
- The burning of any waste, slash or other materials.
- The burning of more than one open fire of any size at the same time.
- The burning of recreational and ceremonial fires that exceed the size specified for campfires (0.5 m x 0.5 m).
- Stubble or grass fires of any size over any area.
- The use of fireworks, sky lanterns or burning barrels of any size or description.
Anyone found to be disobeying this prohibition may be issued a ticket for $345, or, if convicted in court, be fined up to $100,000 and sentenced to one year in jail. If the illegal burn causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person may be subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 and be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.
The Kamloops Fire Centre stretches from the northern border of Wells Gray Park near Blue River to the U.S. border to the south, and from the Bridge River Glacier west of Gold Bridge to the Monashee Mountains east of Lumby.
They have already responded to 43 human-caused wildfires since April 1 – the largest of which grew to 1,400 hectares in size.
May 14, 2013 / 6:43 pm
Tech-savvy candidates have prompted Elections BC to issue a warning that the province's 17-year-old election law forbids Twitter and Facebook postings on voting day.
Elections BC spokesman Don Main says the agency was alerted that Liberal candidate Richard Lee, who is running in Burnaby North, had been tweeting, despite a provision in the Election Act that prohibits broadcasting or transmitting advertising on election day.
Main says Elections BC has interpreted that section of the act to include online postings to social media.
He says the parties have been warned, and Lee has since taken down his offending Twitter posts.
But it's not difficult to find other candidates who have posted on election day, including NDP Leader Adrian Dix, whose most recent tweet is timestamped at about 6 a.m.
Main says enforcement is complaint-driven, and he can't say what, if anything, could happen to candidates who tweeted on voting day.
May 14, 2013 / 3:30 pm
Spotty showers, cooler temperatures, and decreased winds, have allowed fire fighters to make good headway on the Spatsum Creek wildfire.
With no additional growth yesterday, the fire remains estimated at 1400 hectares in size.
Over 110 fire fighters are on site today, assisted by six helicopters and five water tenders.
More crews are continuing to arrive and a Type One Incident Management Team is now in place. A fire camp will be implemented for tomorrow.
This fire still continues to challenge crews due to steep slopes, rocky terrain, and windy conditions.
Crews have been successful establishing guard on the eastern flank up to Tremont Creek.
Today fire fighters will continue to build guard around the fire’s perimeter and helicopters will provide bucketing support.
This person-caused fire serves as a reminder for the public to be vigilant during this period of high fire danger rating.
Please report all wildfires at *5555 on your cellular phone or toll-free at 1-800-663-5555 to report a wildfire.
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