public reporting the provincial forest fire reporting centre
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Public Reporting The Provincial Forest Fire Reporting Centre. BC Fire Facts. Every year the BC Forest Service fights approximately 3,000 forest fires. 50\% of those fires are caused by lighting, the other 50\% by human activity 1998-2002:

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Presentation Transcript
bc fire facts
BC Fire Facts
  • Every year the BC Forest Service fights approximately 3,000 forest fires.
  • 50% of those fires are caused by lighting, the other 50% by human activity


  • Suppression costs amounted to $311 million (preparedness costs not included)
  • Total mature volume destroyed was 13 million cubic metres
  • Area destroyed was 101,878 ha
  • Total damage to timber was $82 million
  • Total damage to cut product, buildings, equipment and improvements was 10.2 million
history of public reporting in bc

History of Public Reporting in BC

Prior to 1995 – using a zenith 5555 number wildfire reports were directed to one of six fire centres via a BC Tel operator.

A review of the 1994 Garnet Fire identified potential problem with reporting fires by the zenith number and recommended the creation of a central reporting centre to eliminate the need of operator intervention.

creation of the reporting centre

Creation of the Reporting Centre

The entire Protection Program was restructured in 1995 to centralize many services, (Fire Reporting, Accounting & Payroll)

The goal of the reporting centre was to eliminate operator intervention and create an efficient method for gathering and relaying wildfire information

In 1995 the Provincial Forest Fire Reporting Centre was established in Kamloops, BC.

The Reporting Centre receives all fire calls for the entire Province directly from the public.

provincial forest fire reporting
Provincial Forest Fire Reporting

The “general public” reports > one-third of all forest fires each year.

The objective of the forest fire reporting system is to provide a simple and direct means to report a forest fire.

The 1-800 system provides the caller direct access to the Provincial Forest Fire Reporting Centre 24 hours a day, 12 months a year.


the reporting centre today

The Reporting Centre Today

  • 8 work stations each with a multi-line phone & network computer .
  • A Computer system that is linked to the Provincial Dispatch and Protection Information Systems.
  • Staff that is geared to level of activity.
  • An after hours answering service which makes contact with a designated duty officer.

Re-located to Victoria in 1998 the Reporting centre is equipped with the following:


Provide administrative support (payroll, accounts, filing, special assignments) during periods of low call activity resulting in FTE savings.

Proximity to the IT support staff responsible for program maintenance and enhancements of database functionality

Availability of reliable telephone line technology (line capacity) and IT support is more accessible in a major centre.

Rationale for Relocating the Centre to Victoria

to report forest fires call



*5555 for Cell Phones

agents collect information from caller to determine
Agents collect information from caller to determine:

Location of fire

Approximate size

Access to fire

Burning activity

If values or life are


there are 6 fire centres in the province these include
There are 6 Fire Centres in the Province, these include:






Prince George

1 888 797 1717

Our purpose is to:

Register open burning activity in BC,

Provide clients with a reference number,

Provide information on safe burning and BC Environment Regulations,

Answer any information questions that the public may have regarding open burning,

Explain the current conditions.

open fire tracking system
Allows clients to register over the phone and avoid commuting to a field office.

Open burning is tracked “on-line” throughout the province.

Information on burning activity can be made available in “read only” format to environmental and fire protection agencies.

To make the caller aware of the legal responsibilities associated with burning in British Columbia.

To have documentation that callers have been made aware of the legal responsibilities associated with burning.

Open Fire Tracking System
agents fills out an ofts form that contains information on
Agents fills out an OFTS form that contains information on:


Location of burn

Burn category info

Legal description

Once details are complete a reference and a client number is auto generated.

Graph depicting the relationship between the calls received on the Forest Fire Reporting Line and the Open Fire Tracking Line
pffrc is responsible for
PFFRC is responsible for:

All forest fire reports within the province,

Issuance of open fire reference numbers,

Administrative support to the finance and administrative section,

Individually assigned projects.

annual cost estimate for operating the pffrc
Annual Cost Estimate for Operating the PFFRC
  • Wages & benefits to operate both the fire reporting and open fire tracking line $145,000
  • Cost of the Answering Service for after hours and winter reporting $22,000
  • Cost for maintenance and rental of sundry office equipment $ 3,000
  • Total Annual cost $170,000
centralized fire reporting centre efficiencies

Centralized Fire Reporting Centre Efficiencies

Minimal staffing level of 4 agents on shift daily

Provincially only 8 seasonal staff designated to the Centre; a reduction from 36 individuals.

After hours and winter calls are directed to a single Answering Service

Incorporation of Open Fire Tracking in 1999 eliminated the need of fire permits being issued at each district office.

Reference numbers issued in place of paper permits.

Open Fire Tracking System is integrated with Dispatch, and shares the same software.

Reduction in the number of false dispatches