As summer temperatures climb high and people across the Capital Region head to their favourite swimming holes to beat the heat, they won’t be alone.
Capital Regional District parks staff, bylaw enforcement officers and West Shore RCMP officers will continue their patrols of summertime hotspots in an effort to curb liquor and other bylaw infractions.
This season has been much quieter for enforcement, perhaps due to the cooler weather, said Janette Loveys, manager of park operations.
“Most of our work has been around making contact with park visitors in a very proactive way and then seeking volunteer compliance,” Loveys said. “Alcohol is either dumped, or people choose to leave.”
If people choose not to comply, they could receive a $200 fine for consuming liquor in a park. The fine doubled in 2010 to deter public drinking.
“We want to make sure that it’s a positive park experience for everyone. There might be behaviour or safety issues as well. Often is alcohol though, because if it’s a nice summer day, people want to go out and have a drink.”
Thetis Lake and Sooke Potholes are two of the areas constantly being patrolled through the joint effort with RCMP, though Elk and Beaver lakes, as with any other CRD park, is being monitored.
“It’s not a secret. We want park visitors to see the patrols. Even having the presence in a proactive way addresses the issues before they become significant.”