Thetis Lake. (Black Press News Media file photo)

CRD advises park visitors to be aware of surroundings ahead of busy summer season

Regional parks, trails and beaches receive about 7.6 million visits a year

Summer is here and that means some of Greater Victoria’s popular beaches, parks and trails will soon be flooded with locals and tourists looking for some fun in the sun.

To accommodate the influx of visitors, the Capital Regional District increases patrols in regional parks to ensure they’re safe and enjoyable for users.

“The summer is our busiest time,” said Jeff Leahy, senior manager with CRD Parks.

Parks and trails in the area receive an estimated 7.6 million visits per year, according to Leahy.

“It’s exciting to see we’re getting that much use but with that kind of use there’s going to be some challenges,” Leahy said. “Everybody needs to follow park bylaws and be respectful of others.”

READ ALSO: Emergency crews aid injured man at Thetis Lake Park

Patrolling regional parks and trails is a joint effort between the CRD and other institutions like municipal police forces and municipal bylaw officers. He said they focus on some of the more popular areas like Beaver Lake, Island View Beach, Sooke Potholes, Thetis Lake and Matheson Lake.

Leahy said bylaw officers also view patrolling parks and trails as an opportunity to educate visitors about rules like staying to the right of trails or giving horses the right of way. Other rules that people can be reminded of include no campfires, no smoking and no consuming alcohol in parks.

While Leahy acknowledged some people engage in dangerous activities such as cliff jumping, he said he could not comment on why more permanent patrols, such as lifeguards, aren’t in place.

READ ALSO: Crews respond to non-fatal drowning at Thetis Lake

In June, View Royal Fire Rescue, BC Ambulance and West Shore RCMP responded to a non-fatal drowning at Thetis Lake.

The Lifesaving Society of B.C. and the Yukon said the majority of drownings — 37 per cent — occur in lakes, but almost all that are seen in B.C. are preventable.

Leahy did note that people should be knowledgeable about their own swimming abilities and be careful to avoid dangerous situations.

“People have been injured jumping off cliffs and it’s a hazardous activity,” Leahy said.

He also suggested swimmers have a buddy with them and that park visitors pay attention to posted signs.

“Keep an eye on your children and be aware of your surroundings,” Leahy said.

shalu.mehta@goldstreamgazette.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

West Shore resident, local officer encourages women to take control of their safety

Kris Greffard is posting short videos with safety tips for women using local trails and parks

Point Ellice House exhibit offers new lens into colonial history

The new ‘Politics of luxury’ display studies the wealthy O’Reilly family from several angles

Police and Indigenous communities pull together in 10-day canoe journey

Victoria Police Department, Ministry of Children and Family Development took part in Pulling Together Canoe Journey

Saanich Police receive another report of a cougar sighting

The big cat was spotted in the area near Saanich Road and Blanshard Street

Nearly a dozen coonhound puppies and their mother to reunite at Saanich park

Dogs’ former foster family initiated one-year reunion plans

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Most Read