Help Keep Beaches Safe for Everyone - Beach Fires Not Permitted in Victoria

With graduation celebrations underway and warmer evenings, the Victoria Fire Department is reminding residents that beach fires are not permitted. Smoke from a beach fire not only impacts air quality for nearby residents, it is toxic. When burned, driftwood releases carcinogenic dioxins into the air due to combustion of the sea salt-saturated wood.

Many adults, children and pets have been seriously burned by beach fires that have been smothered by sand for extinguishment, instead of water. Beach fires are also a risk to ecologically-sensitive plants and trees in the area, and pose a risk to nearby homes.

Each weekend throughout the summer, joint patrols by police, fire and bylaw officers will take place on Victoria beaches to improve awareness and compliance. Those found having a beach fire may be ticketed. A beach fire offence can result in a fine ranging from $350 to $2,000 in Victoria.

Beach fires are often difficult to access due to their location. A small or smoldering beach fire can be time consuming to put out, tying up emergency responders who may be needed elsewhere in the community. The Victoria Fire Department responds to nearly 200 beach fire calls each year that put people’s health, property and the environment at risk.

Parks are for the enjoyment of all. The Victoria Fire Department want residents and visitors to enjoy local beaches. A fire fuelled by natural gas, propane or charcoal briquette contained within a portable appliance or device that has been specifically designed for that purpose, is allowed.

To report a beach fire, contact the Victoria Fire Department at 250.384.1122.