SURREY RCMP, Surrey Fire Service and Surrey Bylaws are reminding the public to have fun and be safe this Diwali and Halloween season, especially when it comes to fireworks.
The City of Surrey restricts the use of any type of fireworks all year round to only those who have applied for and been granted the appropriate permit by the Surrey Fire Service. Fireworks permit applications and all other required information must be submitted to the Surrey Fire Service a minimum of five business days prior to any scheduled event.
In the days leading up to and during Diwali and Halloween, the Surrey RCMP attends hundreds of calls from the public regarding fireworks and seizes hundreds of unregulated fireworks. Officers issue bylaw tickets to individuals who do not possess the proper permits or are using fireworks in an unsafe manner. Individuals under the age of 18 who are found in possession of fireworks without a permit may be susceptible to a $250 fine. Exploding fireworks without a permit can lead to a $500 fine, whatever your age.
“Every year a robust plan is put in place involving extra officers to ensure the public’s safety and to handle the increase in calls that comes with celebrations such as Halloween and Diwali,” says Surrey RCMP Sgt. Bert Paquet. “Our goal is to keep everyone safe and ensure no one is injured and no property is damaged.”
Surrey RCMP encourages people to report incidents involving the misuse of fireworks at 604-599-0502.
For information on fireworks permits visit the City of Surrey’s website. For a full list of Halloween safety tips visit the Surrey RCMP’s website.
IN Vancouver, Imtiaz Popat, who is running for Vancouver Park Board with the Coalition of Progressive Electors (COPE), said: “Fireworks, including firecrackers, are essential to a Diwali celebration. Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights that welcomes the new year. This year it falls on Thursday, October 23. However, Vancouver City by-laws state that fireworks are only allowed from October 25 to October 31 leading up to Halloween. Diwali dates change from year to year. Vision should have planned for this year’s celebration.”
Fireworks permits can be applied for in designated spaces under the City bylaws. “Vancouver Parks and Recreation can also organize permitted fireworks events in Vancouver Parks on Diwali,” said Popat.