It’s going to cost you a whole lot more if you park within five metres of a fire hydrant in Port Moody.
At its meeting Tuesday (Nov. 23), council voted to increase the fine for blocking a fire hydrant to $500.
Currently the penalty for such an offence is $50, with a discount to $25 if the fine is paid within 30 days. In Vancouver, the fine is $100.
In a report to council, senior bylaw enforcement officer Patrik Kolby, recommended a boost to $100 for the violation to bring it in line with fines for other common street and traffic bylaw offences in Port Moody, which were last amended in 2020.
He said leaving a vehicle too close to a fire hydrant “may have a direct impact on public safety” if firefighters need to get to it in an emergency.
Coun. Steve Milani agreed, suggesting the fine should be raised to $150.
“This is a very important issue,” he said.
“You can’t mess around with safety. People have to know that.”
Then Coun. Amy Lubik raised the stakes even higher with a motion to increase the fine by 1,000 per cent.
But if it’s paid promptly, the penalty is lowered to $300.
Tim Savoie, Port Moody’s city manager, said even if the higher fine doesn’t serve as a deterrent, firefighters have ways to still get access to a blocked hydrant.
“The fire department is very confident they could move any obstacle in short order,” he quipped.
“But the owner might not like the final result.”