After Kingston Fire and Rescue issued a total open air burning ban yesterday (Wednesday, Jul. 18, 2018), Fire Chief Shawn Armstrong is calling on residents to exercise caution during the dry conditions.
Armstrong is urging those throughout Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington to be “extra vigilant to prevent wildfires,” and to yield for volunteer firefighters responding to calls, according to a press release from the City of Kingston. Volunteer firefighters use a flashing green strobe light on the dashboard of their vehicles to indicate they are responding to an emergency call.
Due to the extreme dry conditions, fire services in the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) ‘mutual aid area’ are now using a new fire response protocol.
“Additional water resources from the neighbouring districts in the KFL&A [area] will be dispatched under the mutual aid program to respond to 9-1-1 fire calls in areas that don’t have fire hydrants,” said Armstrong, who is a member of the KFL&A Fire Chiefs’ Association.
“There’s no rain forecast until next week, and we are at high risk of a wild fire or grass fire situation.”
During total open air burn ban, fireworks, flying lanterns, contained fires, and open flames of any kind of prohibited. The use of propane or gas barbecues is the only exemption during the ban.
The ban is effective immediately and applies to all properties within Kingston. Violation of the burn ban may result in fines of up to $50,000, and violators may also be liable for fire suppression costs. Kingston Fire and Rescue advises citizens to be vigilant when discarding cigarette butts, matches, and other items that can cause a spark or fire.
“Please respect the total burn ban,” said Armstrong.
“And if you notice a green flashing light, make way for the volunteer firefighters.”
Burn ban updates and guidelines regarding open air burning and burn bans are available at www.CityofKingston.ca/residents/emergency-services/kingston-fire-rescue/open-air-burning.