RDOS FireSmart team issues safety reminder as temperatures climb

News Article

As temperatures climb, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) FireSmart team would like to remind homeowners about some simple steps that can be taken around their properties to help prevent the spread of wildfire.

“What property owners need to be aware of is that during a wildfire, flying embers are the most common cause of igniting nearby homes and properties,” says RDOS FireSmart Coordinator Kerry Riess. “By tidying your yard and removing flammable items and vegetation, you will reduce the source of fuel around your home. This decreases the risk of your home being ignited by these embers.”

Quick FireSmart tips to do today around your property

  •  Move piles of firewood and rake leaves or dead material away from buildings.
  • Clean your gutters of pine needles and other debris.
  • Prune tree branches away from your roof.
  • Mow the lawn and keep grasses trimmed.
  • If you use a mower or weed eater on a hot day, be aware it has the potential to spark a fire. After using these types of power tools, it’s advised to water it down after to prevent a fire from occurring.

Choose fire-resistant plants

When shopping for new trees, plants, shrubs or grasses for the garden, it’s important to choose fire-resistant plants. For example, some trees such as pines and spruce, are more flammable than others and shouldn’t be planted close to your home. A FireSmart Landscaping Guide can be downloaded at firesmart.rdos.bc.ca/participants .

 Also consider choosing plants that are tagged FireSmart safe. These are available at numerous garden retailers throughout the region, with further details at firesmartbc.ca/landscaping-hub/plant-program/

 Upcoming FireSmart events

  • Apex Wildfire Community Preparedness Day with pancake breakfast: Saturday, July 16 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Headwaters Lake BBQ & Information Day: Saturday, July 16 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Miller's Cabin, 161 Campbell Lane, Headwaters Lake 2.
  • Westwood BBQ & Information Day: Saturday, July 23 from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Location TBC.

 For further details about each of these events, go to firesmart.rdos.bc.ca.

Sign up for emergency alerts and routine notifications

The RDOS has partnered with Voyent Alert! to provide routine and emergency notifications throughout the region. Sign up now to receive email, text or phone notifications, or download the Voyent Alert! app through the App Store or Google Play. Once you’ve registered, you are automatically signed up for all routine and emergency notifications. Be sure to update your profile with your preferred notification settings. Emergency notices are automatically included.


Mark Pendergraft, Chair
Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen


Kerry Riess
RDOS FireSmart Coordinator

Erick Thompson

Andrea Rendall


RDOS Toll Free

RDOS Communications                 

RDOS Communications