It seems even a provincial state of emergency due to wildfires isn’t enough to deter some careless smokers on Vancouver Island – but a $575 fine might be.

West Shore RCMP say an officer sitting in traffic Thursday on Veteran’s Memorial Parkway witnessed a driver right in front of him take a drag of a cigarette before tossing it out of his window.

The Mountie pulled over the driver and told him he was being stopped for throwing the cigarette out of his window, an offence under the BC Wildfire Act.

The driver replied that he was sorry, and the officer then asked him if he was aware of the wildfire situation around the province that has prompted a state of emergency.

According to RCMP, the driver said he “believed there were a few fires going on.”

The officer then educated him on the extreme risk of tossing cigarette butts in wildfire season, and told him that just yesterday a home was lost to a fast-moving wildfire that sparked along Sooke Road.

The man was then handed a ticket under the Wildfire Act for $575.

The province has declared a state of emergency as nearly 190 wildfires burn across B.C., displacing more than 16,000 people in Interior communities.

If you see a wildfire starting or someone throwing cigarette butts, report it to the BC Wildfire Service at 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 from a cell phone.