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Grande Prairie area residents following fire ban restrictions

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With drying conditions continuing in the next few days, the fire ban continues through out the province. The wildfire risk is back at extreme in the Grande Prairie Forest Protection Area. City of Grande Prairie Deputy Fire Chief Preben Bossen says for the most part people are following the restrictions but there has been a few people who didn’t know about the ban in the city.

“We get very good compliance. There has been very rare incidents where we attend a fire in a back yard. Once people have been advised of the ban, they have been cooperative of extinguishing the fire right away.”

He says the removal of the fire ban will depend on the weather. The forecast doesn’t include rain in the Grande Prairie area until late next week.

Within the last week and a half in the County, there has been three smoke complaints called in. County Fire Chief Everett Cooke says the people burning simply didn’t know about the ban or thought it would have been lifted after the rain last weekend.

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Extreme wildfire risk in the area brings talk of local fires. Cooke says the County does have fire safe programs that they work with to prevent the spread of wild fire and they are in pretty good shape.

“I feel our region as a whole is very proactive in the steps we take. The County of Grande Prairie along with our regional partners have a lot of equipment and fire fighters in place to respond and we do.”

They work with the mountain pine beetles in the Dunes area as well as a wood chip program that helps to fire smart people’s property.

There has been 42 wildfires this season in the area with 130 hectares burned.

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