Saskatoon’s new restrictions on backyard fire pits is drawing plenty of reaction from residents.
City council voted 6-5 on Monday to only allow backyard open fires between the hours of 5 p.m. and 11 p.m.
The move was seen as a compromise between those who enjoy fires, and those who say it negatively affects their health.
Jenni Lawrence, who doesn’t have a fire pit herself, doesn’t think it’s the right decision.
“If you’re being safe, there’s no reason people shouldn’t be able to have a fire,” she said.
Fellow resident Lori Newlove agrees. She told 650 CKOM she’s had issues with a neighbour’s fire pit in the past, but it hasn’t affected her opinion on backyard fires.
“They would have a fire pit going until 5 a.m., and that’s kind of irritating when you’re trying to sleep and there’s smoke coming in through your windows,” she said.
“But I don’t think there should be a law that tells you when you can run a fire pit in your backyard.”
Others say the restrictions don’t go far enough.
Charlotte Garrett lives in Caswell Hill and said there shouldn’t be any wood fires at all.
“If council was seriously interested in the population’s health, they would go to a ban,” she told reporters Monday.
The Saskatoon grandmother has pushed for more restrictions on wood fires for several years, saying the smoke from neighbour’s yards affects her lungs and causes headaches.
While she said the decision on limited hours is a form of progression, she added it’s been a slow process.
“It’s sort of like watching a snail move,” she said.
Saskatoon fire crews will be responsible for enforcing the reduced hours, but the department has indicated they will do so on a complaints-driven basis.
A first-time offence could result in a warning or a $250 fine depending on the responder’s discretion.
The bylaw is expected to come into in effect next spring.