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Crews battling over 300 wildfires across B.C.

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Lightning storms have sparked many of the over 300 wildfires that are burning across B.C. right now.

Over the last few days four large fires, some as big as 2,500 hectares, have been sparked in the Cariboo region and that has either forced people from their home or has them on an evacuation alert.

Kim Steinbart with the B.C. Forest Service says they’re considering bringing in outside resources, to give local firefighters a chance to rest.  “What we need to look at is the longer term.  We have to make sure that we have people to replace crews as they start reaching the end of their terms and start needing relaxation before they can get back out.”

Steinbart is also reminding people a campfire ban remains in effect for most of the province, with a few exceptions for the Southeastern portion of B.C. and the Prince George area.

It doesn’t stop there, as of today; you’re not allowed to smoke on Vancouver beaches, parks, or trails.  The fire danger is extreme, and the grass and forests are dry.

The danger of sparking a blaze with a tossed cigarette butt will only increase as the hot weather continues.

If you’re caught lighting up, you could face a fine of at least $250.  Charcoal and wood-burning barbecues are also banned.

You’ll have to get out the ruler; propane barbecues more than 76 centimetres off the ground are allowed.

Watch for stepped-up enforcement in places like Stanley Park and Jericho.  A permanent smoking ban at parks and beaches will go into effect September 1st.