Community Wildfire Protection

Maple Ridge is embedded within the forest; approximately 60% of the community is forested. This region of the province is susceptible to both lightning and human caused fires. Overall, the community could be classified with a fire risk profile described by a low to moderate fire probability and high to extreme consequence based on the values at risk.

B.A. Blackwell and Associates Ltd. were retained to develop a Community Wildfire Protection Plan (PDF) in consultation with Fire Rescue Service staff and other support staff as required for consideration by Mayor and Council. The project was funded by Maple Ridge and a supplementary grant from the Union of B.C. Municipalities.

Priorities


The key priorities for wildfire management planning in Maple Ridge were identified as:
  • hazard and risk mapping of Maple Ridge to establish areas of the community that are at greatest risk from fire
  • facilitation of communication and education to local residents, all levels of government and the general public
  • facilitation of a review and amendment of existing and proposed development permits based on the hazard mapping assessment
  • facilitation of revisions to building standards and bylaws
  • identification of potential locations for strategic fuel breaks and forest stand-level fuel reduction both within and outside the community

Wildfire Development Permit Area


On June 25, 2014, Maple Ridge hosted a public open house to obtain input on a proposed Wildfire Development Permit Area with an aim to protect life and property in designated areas that could be at risk for wild-land fire. Note that the proposed Wildfire Development Permit is intended to apply only to those lands identified on the proposed Community Wildfire Development Permit Area map and only for new development. The information that was shared at the open house includes how wildfire hazard risk areas may be managed to:
  • Ensure mitigating construction and development techniques are utilized in new development to reduce the risk to property and people;
  • Further reduce the risk of potential post-fire landslides and debris flow.
  • July 25, 2016 – Wildfire Development Permit Bylaws were amended by Council 
Open House Presentation (PDF). Note: the proposed Wildfire Development Permit Area is not intended to affect existing development.

If you have any questions on this process, please email the Fire department or call 604-463-5880.

The following reports were presented to Council:

Risk Management System


A wildfire risk management system (PDF) was developed to identify key areas of risk within the community and to support the development of the plan for consideration by Mayor and Council. A synopsis of key findings and plan recommendations follows. In total, 19 recommendations were developed for consideration by the District. These focus on communication and education, structure protection, emergency response, training and post-fire rehabilitation.

Community Wildfire Protection Plan


On July 10, 2007, the Mayor and Council passed the following resolution: "That the recommendations contained in the Community Wildfire Protection Plan be adopted in principle pending the development of a detailed implementation plan with an associated financial plan which will be brought back to Council for their consideration and adoption."

On November 27th, 2018 City Council passed a resolution to apply for grant funding to update the City’s Community Wildfire Protection Plan. In spring of 2019 that grant funding application was approved by the Province. The City has retained BA Blackwell and Associates to conduct a review of the Community Wildfire Protection Plan and associated Wildfire Development Permit for the purposes of updating as required. This work is currently underway and anticipated to be completed in 2020.

Documents