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Firefighters snuff out Jaffray grass fire

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Firefighters from Jaffray and Baynes Lake put out a half-hectare grass fire on Thursday afternoon.

South Country Rural Fire & Rescue officials said it happened when a man was burning the grass on his property.

“A private property owner was burning grass and it got away on him,” said Elk Valley & South Country Rural Fire & Rescue Chief Michael Hockley. “When we arrived on scene, the fire was moving into longer grass and our firefighters did a good job of containing it quickly and preventing what could have been a much more serious situation.”

The flames were extinguished thanks to the efforts of Seven firefighters who responded with five pieces of equipment.

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“This is a good reminder for everyone about the importance of ensuring the burning conditions are safe and taking steps to be prepared every time you burn outdoors. This includes having a water source, shovel or tools, burning when it’s not windy and staying on site monitoring the fire until it is completely out,” said Hockley.

Officials with the Regional District of East Kootenay said caution is needed when burning over the next few months.

“This time of year is known as the ‘spring dip’ where the dead, dry fuels from last season pose a fire risk due to their low moisture content and the lush, moisture-rich new vegetation has not yet started to grow,” explained Columbia Valley Rural Fire & Rescue Chief Drew Sinclair.

“Never underestimate spring burning conditions. Fires like these are preventable and it is critical that residents ensure they are fully prepared and that conditions are safe if they are planning any outdoor burning,” added Sinclair.

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