Fire rangers made sure that everyone followed fire regulations. No one was outside the law. A prominent Newfoundland politician found this out to his surprise, when he had a run-in with Thomas Howe, Newfoundland’s Chief Forest Ranger.
Once, when clearing land on his farm at Paradise, near Bonavista, Sir William [Croaker] was burning brush under conditions considered by Thomas Howe to be unsafe. When Howe told him his fire was in contravention of the Forest Fires Act he angrily retorted saying, “My man don’t you know that I can have that Act changed at any time.” Howe responded saying, “But sir, you haven’t changed it yet”, and he charged Sir William under the Act and had him pay a fine.