April 19, 2016
Sky Lanterns in Kamloops
Kamloops, BC - With the rising popularity of sky lanterns, Kamloops Fire Rescue has been receiving numerous inquiries regarding the use of sky lanterns in Kamloops. Kamloops Fire Rescue also responded to a complaint regarding a sky lantern that was found in the forested area above Summit Elementary.
Facts about sky lanterns (provided by NFPA):
- The lanterns are made of oiled rice paper with a bamboo frame, materials that can easily catch on fire.
- A candle or wax fuel cell is used with the device.
- The lit flame heats the inside of the lantern, causing it to rise into the air.
- Once lit and airborne, it can travel over 2km in distance.
- Wind can affect the sky lantern, blowing the sides, forcing the hot air out and sending the flaming lantern back to the ground.
- These lanterns have the potential to cause fires.
- A flaming lantern can drop onto a rooftop, field, trees or power lines before the flame is fully extinguished.
- A destructive fire can result when a flaming lantern reaches the ground during dry conditions.
- Sky lanterns should not be used under any circumstances.
“A stunning sight at night, sky lanterns pose a huge fire hazard when released. Releasing an object and letting it fly away unattended that is technically on fire, is probably not the best idea when we live in a semi-arid desert,” said Dean Olstad, Chief of Fire Prevention.
Under no circumstances are sky lanterns to be released within the boundaries of the City of Kamloops. Individuals found releasing sky lanterns within City boundaries can face fines starting at $500.
Dean Olstad, Chief of Fire Prevention
Kamloops Fire Rescue