Bonfires are a potential hazard in forests. Consult the SOPFEU recommendations before starting a fire; they include choosing the site to ensuring there are no hot spots left.
Campfires are the cause of numerous forest fires every year. Follow these steps to fully and safely enjoy your fire.
Any fire burning freely or that can freely spread. Examples of open-air fires are fireworks and flame and spark producing tools (such as welding tools).
Fires burning in facilities intended for this purpose and equipped with spark arrestor screens, such as stoves, fireplaces, and metal containers, are not considered to be open-air fires. In order to comply with prevailing standards, spark arrestor openings must be no wider than 1 centimetre.
The SOPFEU and the Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs do not systematically issue a ban on open fires when the fire danger is extreme. However, an extreme danger rating indicates a strong probability that a fire burning under these conditions would ignite, spread rapidly, and become uncontrollable.
Such conditions call for greater prudence and vigilance. In this case, campfires, discarded cigarette butts, fireworks, and off-trail ATVs are a hazard in forest areas.
It is difficult to establish a specific distance because the risk of fire spreading is related to a number of factors, including weather conditions, the time of day, and the type of fuel.
In addition, these factors are in turn influenced by the seasons. In spring, for example, extra vigilance is needed. Surface fuel, composed of dry grasses, twigs, and moss, is easily ignited and it can make the fire spread to the surrounding forest areas.