15th Annual Fireproof Metchosin Day March 17, 2018

Banish the Broom!

Our seemingly endless grey, wet, winter makes it difficult to believe that the long, parched days of summer are coming.  But living in the rain shadow of the Olympics, coupled with climate change, means that those days will dutifully arrive again. Now is a good time to prepare to fireproof our community.

Grab your gloves, your lopers, your saws and your determination, whatever it takes to help rid our community of this hazardous interloper!  Saturday, March 17th has been designated Fireproof Metchosin Day, the fifteenth year Metchosin residents have been asked to help our community by removing broom and gorse from the roadside.

Carelessly disposed cigarettes from car windows account for many fires, especially with the fuel accelerants known as broom and gorse lining the road. The volatile oils within these plants act like cans of gasoline distributed throughout Metchosin. If your neighbours are less than able, please offer to help, or make it a fun block party event. Fires don’t respect property lines and a neighbour’s broom patch can spell disaster for you too.

Broom Removal #1 priority is to stay safe! Join with your family or neighbours and use the buddy system to watch for traffic. If you can pull the broom without straining your back, do so, otherwise try to cut below the surface. Young broom is vigorous and will usually resprout, however there is a lateral root that comes out sideways from the main root, cut below there and the plant will not likely come back. Old growth broom can be cut higher up the stem; it doesn’t regrow, but be careful to not leave tripping hazards. Gorse is a nastier affair, it produces more volatile oils, and you should be prepared for the vicious spines with which it is armed. It is sure to resprout unless the root is removed.

If unsafe to burn on your own property the Public Works Department is offering to burn on site on the road right-of-way. To take advantage of this offer, please ensure that your off-site location on the road right-of-way is clear of trees and aerial lines to provide a safe burn-site.  Please call the District Office (250-474-3167) and leave your house number and a telephone number, so that the Works Crew can plot the most efficient use of their time.

Chief Dunlop has requested that we adhere to the following guidelines for residential burns to help reduce the danger of fire and the discomfort from smoke in the community:

  • Burning is permitted from 6am to 6pm only. 
  • Fires to be completely extinguished by 6pm - no smoke/no flame.
  • Only dry leaves, tree trimmings and residential yard debris are acceptable burning materials.
  • The burning of any construction waste, demolition debris, garbage, food or household waste, plastic, rubber, asphalt shingles, or other similar materials is prohibited.
  • Must be 30 ft away from any structure, trees or fence lines.
  • A responsible person is in constant supervision of the fire.
  • An adequate water supply is available at all times for immediate extinguishment if needed.
  • The fire is kept hot to avoid excessive smoke.
  • Do not ignite a fire in high wind conditions.
  • Do not burn materials that have not originated from the property.

    Should you have any concerns or questions - please contact the Metchosin Fire Department
    Office Hours: 250-478-1307
    24/7 Fire Duty Officer: 250-478-7770 
    (ask for the Metchosin Duty Officer)


  • Thank you for helping to keep our community safe!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018 - 8:30am