Richmond Nature Park has been forced to close its trails due to the increased risk of fire.
As the inclement hot September weather continued, a small brush fire sparked Saturday near Westminster Highway and Shell Road, just inside the park's boundaries.
The fire was quickly put out and there were no injuries or significant damage. The cause is undetermined at this time.
But with ongoing dry weather and warm temperatures, the undergrowth in parks and along trails is extremely dry and any fire in these areas has the potential to spread rapidly.
As a precaution, the City of Richmond has temporarily closed trails in the park, including the Nature Park East site along with the Shell Road and Horseshore Slough Trails until further notice.
Signs have been posted to mark the closure of the trails. The public is urged to respect all trail and park closures as a result of the fire hazard.
The city is also urging all residents to be vigilant in practising fire safety during the continued hot and dry weather.
Dispose of cigarettes and matches in an ashtray - do not toss lit items out a car window or off a balcony - and operate propane barbecues a safe distance from flammable materials.
The ban on outdoor burning remains in place. No open fires and no charcoal barbecues are permitted, including in all beach areas. Only propane barbecues and stoves are permitted in parks.
If you see a brush fire, report it immediately by calling 911. For more information on the closures, please call the parks department at 604-244-1208.