The B.C. Wildfire Service is once again reminding people to keep their drones away from active wildfires after one was spotted near Keremeos Creek.
On Monday, Aug. 29, two separate incidents of unauthorized drone activity led to a complete shutdown of aerial firefighting efforts.
All airspace above and around wildfires is restricted to BCWS personnel and aircraft. That restriction applies to a radius of five nautical miles around the fire and an altitude of 3,000 feet above ground level near any wildfire.
The Keremeos Creek Wildfire, while no longer out of control and currently considered held, still has fires actively burning within the perimeter.
Drones are considered “extremely dangerous” when flown near wildfires and can hamper efforts to bring them under control due to the safety concerns. The risk of of a drone colliding with a low-flying firefighting aircraft could be deadly, according to the BCWS.
It poses a significant safety risk to #BCwildfire personnel, especially when low-flying firefighting aircraft are present. If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft, the consequences could be deadly.There is zero tolerance for people who fly drones in active wildfire areas.
— BC Wildfire Service (@BCGovFireInfo) August 30, 2022
This was the first time that a warning was issued for the Keremeos Creek Wildfire, however the BCWS had to issue the warning for another wildfire near Terrace earlier in August, 2022.
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