Beaconsfield plans to go ahead with leaf blower ban despite resident outcry
Beaconsfield officials say they plan to go ahead with their summertime ban on electric and gas-powered leaf blowers, despite some residents decrying the regulation.
“For the amount of time that a leaf blower is operating to do its job, it is so minuscule,” said resident Al Randall. “It makes absolutely no sense.”
Mayor Georges Bourelle insists research indicates the tools cause a lot of noise and air pollution — and many residents aren’t properly informed about the risks.
“It’s a very, very serious threat to health, it’s a health hazard that people are generally not aware of,” he told Global News.
“Anything you can find on a property is blown in the air with hurricane force.”
He points out Beaconsfield wouldn’t be the first city to partially ban them — bans already exist on the Island of Montreal and in Westmount.
“We are doing it for the quality of life and health of the residents,” Bourelle said.
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He adds the city started looking into the issue after “multiple residents complained” about the noisy machines.
“We think leaf blowers are called leaf blowers to blow leaves and leaves are in the spring and fall,” Bourelle insisted.
“So, we would accept leaf blowers [being] used in the spring and fall to do the work they are supposed to do.”
The city points out electric and gas-powered leaf blowers generate sound levels up to 80 decibels and 115 decibels respectively, well above the accepted limit of 55 decibels recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Public Health Montreal.
WATCH BELOW: Beaconsfield residents divided over leaf blower ban
Bourelle explains once the city started researching leaf blowers, it discovered the threat of pollution and increased health risks.
“You have fertilizer, fecal matter, and it goes up in the air,” Bourelle said.
“It’s a very, very serious threat to health. Particularly to those who have asthma, respiratory problems, people who have preexisting conditions or cardiovascular conditions.”
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The new regulation is expected to be officially voted in at a public meeting Monday, July 9 at 8 p.m.
Bourelle says he’s not sure how many people will show up, but it is “not necessarily, at this point, going to change our decision.”
If approved, leaf blowers will be partially banned from June 1 to Sept. 30; they will be allowed from Oct. 1 to May 31.
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