Drone restrictions near wildfires needed: B.C. government

CBC News
September 09, 2015 | Vancouver
By CBC News
The B.C. government plans to toughen up the laws prohibiting the operation of drones near wildfires, after the unmanned aircraft grounded air tankers and helicopters that should have been fighting two forest fires earlier this summer.

Legislative amendments to the Wildfire Act will be introduced next spring, Mike Morris, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, announced at a news conference in Prince George Friday.

"Our message is simple. If your drone is in the sky above an active wildfire, you are grounding firefighting aircraft, putting lives at risk and may cause the fire to spread," said Morris.

"This is completely unacceptable behaviour and there will be legal consequences for anyone who gets caught."

Morris did not reveal the specifics of the legislative changes, but he said staff are looking into a range of measures to improve enforcement including ticketing and seizures. | READ MORE

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