For the most part voluntary compliance with the new Chilliwack outdoor smoking ban bylaw is expected

Outdoor smoking ban in Chilliwack goes into effect Oct. 1

Voluntary compliance with the bylaw is expected, but bylaw officers will have the discretion to enforce it and fine someone up to $500.

The biggest myth about the new ban on outdoor smoking in public spaces is that people can no longer smoke anywhere in Chilliwack at all.

They can always retreat to the privacy of their own bathtub, noted Mayor Sharon Gaetz, who was trying to bring a little levity to the subject before going over the details of the new non-smoking bylaw at city hall at the council meeting on Tuesday.

She was responding the flood of commentary on social media about the recently approved Outdoor Public Spaces Smoking Regulation bylaw — some of which didn’t get the facts straight.

“They seldom go to the source for information,” she said.

Gaetz clarified that outdoor use of vaporizers or e-cigarettes will also be prohibited under the new bylaw in the specified areas, as well as pipes and  hookahs.

“The whole issue came forward at first over concern about the severe dryness of trails and risk that cigarette smoking caused,” she said.

There was a 200 per cent increase logged in the number of bark mulch and grass fires recently.

One big complaint is people smoking near bus stops.

“They can however smoke if they move 10 metres away from where people are waiting in line at a bus stop” the mayor said.

For the most part voluntary compliance with the bylaw is expected, but bylaw enforcement officers will have the discretion to fine someone up to $500.

“If people persist with smoking, we must enforce the bylaw,” she said.

But education and awareness will roll out first on the city website, and with new signage.

“If you see someone smoking in a public space, be neighbourly and ask them gently and politely not to smoke. That is what we’re hoping will happen.”

No smoking will be permitted within 15 metres of an outdoor playground, playing field, spots venue, stadium or sports facility, or on any land owned by City of Chilliwack or School District 33, at a bus stop, park, off-leash dog park, pool, or trail.

The new outdoor smoking regulation goes into effect on October 1, 2015.  All the details are together with a frequently asked questions (FAQs) guide online at www.chilliwack.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Hundreds fill Chilliwack streets for Black Lives Matter march

‘Canada has a problem too,’ reads at least one protester’s sign

Chilliwack RCMP heard gunfire en route to suspicous activity

Chilliwack man, 42, sent to hospital after shooting, RCMP have confirmed

IHIT names homicide victim found in the Fraser Canyon this week

Police asking for tips into the suspicious death of 29-year-old Alicia Berg

Summer Reading Club still a go, just different says Chilliwack librarian

People can register online and begin tracking their reading as part of the FVRL program

Chilliwack council supporting protests against racism

City calls for participants to be cautious of distancing and to wear masks due to pandemic

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

New platform allows readers to make a one-time or ongoing donation to support local journalism

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

IHIT investigating ‘suspicious’ death of Surrey man

Officers found the body while on foot patrol: Surrey RCMP

Most Read