Forest fire season underway in province

Forest fire season underway in province

Forest fire season has started in the province, and the government is warning people about setting grass fires.

It's an old practice for some people to burn areas of grass, believing that it helps the grass come back stronger in the spring.

But the provincial government calls that "largely unfounded" in a news release, and says that instead, it can be destructive, as well as dangerous.

The Department of Energy and Resource Development considers burning grass a Category 4 fire, which means a written permit is required.

There can be significant consequences if a grass fire gets out of control on forest land, they warn.

Someone who sets a fire may be liable for the cost of fighting the fire and for the destruction of property.

There are also criminal penalties for not following burning regulations. 

The province has averaged 235 forest fires a year over the past 10 years.

In 2016, there were 285 forest fires. Forest fire season usually runs from the third Monday in April until Oct. 31.