Fire ban issued for Banff National Park because of 'elevated' danger

Park Canada officials issued a fire ban for Banff National Park on Tuesday, tweeting that the decision was made “due to elevated fire danger.”

“Lighting or maintaining fires in these areas is now strictly prohibited,” officials said.

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The ban covers wood-burning campfires, charcoal, briquette or wood barbecues, turkey fryers, tiki torches and outdoor wood-burning stoves.

Visitors to the park are still allowed to use gas or propane stoves or barbecues, propane heaters, propane or gas lanterns and candles.

Anyone who does not adhere to the fire ban could face a fine of up to $25,000.

“The fire ban will be lifted as soon as conditions permit,” Banff National Park said.

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Watch below: (From July 10, 2021) Kim Smith speaks with University of Alberta wildland fire assistant professor Jen Beverly about how this year’s wildfire season compares to previous years

Banff National Park is among two dozen jurisdictions in Alberta that currently are under a fire ban, including Calgary, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat.

Much of Alberta has experienced hot and dry weather conditions over the first month of summer.

As of Tuesday, there were 62 wildfires burning in the province. Just one was deemed as being out of control by Alberta Wildfire — that blaze is burning in the northern part of the province.

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Aside from southeastern Alberta, most of the province remained under an air quality advisory issued by Environment Canada.

Hundreds of wildfires are burning throughout Canada — particularly in British Columbia, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Ontario — and smoke from those fires is drifting thousands of kilometres away, causing hazy skies and poor air conditions in many places.

Watch below: Global News videos about wildfire smoke.

To the west of Alberta, B.C.’s public safety minister declared a provincial state of emergency on Tuesday over that province’s wildfire situation.

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Close to 300 fires were burning across B.C. on Tuesday, including some that were encroaching on communities that have issued evacuation orders or alerts.

— With files from Amy Smart, The Canadian Press and Emerald Bensadoun, Global News

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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