Police and BC Parks staff preventing camping on Crown land this weekend

WatchTwo stopchecks are helping prevent people from going out camping in the Cowichan Valley

For the second day in a row, BC Parks staff and police have set up a check-stop on North Shore Road, just west of Youbou in the Cowichan Valley.

They’re checking driver’s licenses and fishing licenses, as they do most long weekends.

However, this long weekend, they’re also turning people around if they have camping equipment and are planning to spend the weekend on Crown land.

It’s a move that has the support of locals as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

“I one hundred per cent support agree with that. People should stay home. We’re never going to beat this virus unless we are a team,” said Loren Bagelman, a Lake Cowichan resident.

This is one of a couple locations in the Cowichan Valley where police are stopping traffic.

Bagelman says if people are heading to their summer cottages, he hopes that they will at least buy their food and supplies closer to their home before heading out.

“Stay in your community or show 100 per cent respect. Anything else than that is disgusting,” he said.

The stay at home mentality is one, shared across the Island.

“We’re asking visitors, not to be visitors really; to stay at home in conjunction with the description or explanation from the provincial health authority,” said Karl Ablack with the Port Renfrew Recovery Task Force, adding that people shouldn’t travel unless it’s essential in order to keep residents safe.

B.C.’s top doctor during her briefing today says people still, need to stay physically distant this weekend before COVID-19restrictions start to lift next week.

“We must continue to stay alert, and stay vigilant. This may long weekend, we need to pause. We need to stay close to home and think through how all of us in BC put into place our safe interaction rules in the days and coming weeks,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry.

Henry says the health of our families, our communities, our businesses and our whole province depends on it.


Kendall Hanson

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