Keep garbage indoors: WildSafe

New garbage and recycling carts wildlife-resistant but not bear-proof.

WildSafe BC is reminding residents to keep their garbage indoors and inaccessible to wildlife as the City of Fernie moves to an automated curbside waste and recycling collection system this week.

Residents who leave their garbage cans outdoors between collection days face a $50 fine under local bylaws.

They could also be slapped with an even bigger fine, starting from $175, for making garbage accessible to dangerous animals, which is prohibited under the BC Wildlife Act.

The new automated service replaces the manual collection service and commenced on Monday, June 4, with waste to be collected on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and recycling to be picked up on alternating Thursdays.

Each home has been provided with a 120-litre wildlife-resistant cart with a locking lid for garbage and a 240-litre cart for recycling, which should be placed on the street for collection no earlier than 5 a.m. on collection day.

The new carts are wildlife-resistant but could still be pried open by bears, according to WildSafe BC Fernie and Elk Valley coordinator, Kathy Murray.

“The big benefit of this (new garbage) can is it’s going to keep the neighbour’s dog out, the crows, the ravens, the skunks, even coyotes, but bears will possibly eventually learn how to break into these,” she said.

“In a perfect world, a bear resistant one would be a similar design and a similar size, with this gravity lock but metal reinforcement on the inside so that the bear can’t pry this open.

“But this certainly is a huge step forward in what we had and the big advantage with this as well is garbage is sitting on the curb on the day of collection, it is somewhat secured.”

Murray said that it was important that people complied with local and provincial laws by keeping both their garbage and recycling cans indoors.

“The bylaws in Fernie state that garbage must be kept indoors between collection days, that doesn’t mean under my deck, underneath my stairs or just here in the carport, that means away from wildlife, that means bring it indoors into your garage,” said Murray.

“People need to realize if you have garbage out by your front, you’re are literally baiting the bear onto your property and jeopardizing your safety and the safety of your entire neighbourhood, that’s why we all need to work together… to keep the garbage and recycling indoors.”

Last year, eight bears, including two black bear cubs, were destroyed by residents or the B.C. Conservation Officer Service in the Elk Valley and South Country due to the threat they posed to human safety.

If you see a bear accessing garbage, contact the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-925-7277 and bring the garbage cans indoors when it is safe to do so.

But Murray warned the bear would be back.

“That bear has learned that there is an easy food source here, he is going to come back,” she said.

“If you have absolutely have to keep this garbage can outside, for whatever reason, you can take the attractants, the garbage, to the communal bear-resistant bins that are located at City Hall, at the arena, at Max Turyk, and at the aquatic centre, and they’re available 24/7.”

For more information on the new waste collection system, visit the City of Fernie website, Fernie.ca.

Just Posted

Big turnout to advance polls

On Saturday, general voting will be open to qualified electors from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Double loss sends Riders back to drawing board

Despite putting up a good fight against both Revelstoke and Creston, the… Continue reading

Gay minister challenges preconceptions

Andrea Brennan serves Fernie at pivotal time in church’s history

Documentary reveals Fernie’s role in WWI internment operations

That Never Happened to screen on 100th anniversary of Morrissey internment camp closure

Environmental monitoring meeting in Elkford tonight

Meeting to focus on environmental monitoring programs at Teck coal mines in the Elk Valley

Singer k.d. lang receives Alberta’s highest honour

Celebrated singer-songwriter k.d. lang received the Alberta Order of Excellence in Edmonton

Meet the City of Fernie candidates

Voters in Fernie will vote for one Mayor, six Councillors and one School Board Trustee on October 20

Meet the District of Sparwood candidates

Voters in Sparwood will vote for one Mayor and six Councillors on October 20

Meet the District of Elkford candidates

The Elkford Chamber of Commerce will host an All Candidates Forum on October 4

Enbridge aims for mid-November to finish B.C. pipeline repair after blast

A natural gas pipeline that ruptured and burned near Prince George caused an explosion and fireball

How to get government cheques if Canada Post staff go on strike

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers said members could go on rotating strikes as early as Monday

Anti-SOGI school trustee files defamation lawsuit against BCTF president

Barry Neufeld says Glen Hansman’s words caused him “indignity,” “personal harassment,” and “anxiety”

Ocean ‘blob’ returns to B.C.’s North Coast

A 2,000 kilometre patch of warm ocean water could signal a warm winter in Prince Rupert

Pot sales down by nearly 70% on Day 2 of legalization in B.C.

Several products on BC Cannabis Store are still sold out

Most Read