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Delta Police looking at curbing fireworks

A city response as well as coordinated regional approach is needed to deal with the fireworks problem, says Dubord
People setting off fireworks are bringing them into Delta from other communities that don’t prohibit the sales as well as online, according to Delta Police.

Delta Police are looking into what more can be done to curb fireworks being set off in the city.

Chief Neil Dubord told the Delta Police Board on Nov. 24 that a large number of complaints about fireworks being set off were made during Halloween and other recent celebration events.

Selling, possessing and transporting fireworks in Delta without a permit is prohibited.

Those who choose to go against the city-wide ban could face a $200 fine for possession if they don’t have a permit.

Permits need to be obtained at least 10 days before an event and several conditions must be met, but Dubord noted not many permits are even issued.

It’s up to city bylaws officers and police to enforce the ban, but Dubord also noted it has been difficult for his officers.

“We’re working on a plan to have better prevention on this particular issue as we go forward…For our officers responding to calls, to be able to see fireworks, stop to respond to the call and be able to respond to another fireworks call just doesn’t happen, unfortunately. And we just don’t have officers roving around that don’t have anything to do and looking for fireworks,” he said.

Dubord noted his department is considering having a special dedicated team activated, during special events when fireworks could be popular, to only respond to such complaints and enforcement.

A stronger communication plan on the use of fireworks in Delta being illegal is also needed, while community leaders are also needed to support the messaging, he added.

“There’s no easy answer to fireworks. I can tell you it is on our agenda and it certainly is on the agenda of the citizens of Delta, and the mayor’s office and my office have received many complaints,” said Dubord.

Fireworks are coming in from other communities that don’t prohibit their sales as well as online, making it not just a Delta but a regional problem, according to Delta Police.

Mayor George Harvie said he expects the problem could get even worse with the border finally reopening and even more product coming into Canada.