Drier Spring Conditions Anticipated as 2018 Forest Fire Season Declared

The 2018 forest fire season will be in effect from May 1 to September 30 on the island portion of the province and from May 15 to September 30 in Labrador.

With conditions expected to be drier than usual this spring due to a lower than normal snowpack, there is an increased risk of wild fires occurring earlier than usual in 2018, especially if coupled with insufficient spring rainfall. Similar conditions last occurred in 2012, when there was an increase in wildfire activity with 198 wildfires and about 225,500 hectares burned in the province, compared to the 20-year average of 140 fires and approximately 34,000 hectares burned.

Under the Forestry Act, a permit to burn is required to burn brush on forest land or within 300 metres of forest land during this period.

Permits to burn can be obtained at regional or district forest management offices. A copy of the Forest Fire Regulations is also available at these offices. Failing to comply with a permit or condition of a permit to burn is an offence and liable in accordance with the Forest Fire Offence and Penalty Regulations.

Extreme caution is advised relating to spring burning and use of vehicles or forestry equipment near forest land. To report a wildfire, please call 1-866-709-FIRE (3473).