Transport Canada, regional district target illegal buoys on Shuswap Lake, Mara Lake

A group of the buoys seized by Transport Canada from Shuswap Lake in 2022 due to non-compliance. Transport Canada

It seems the message is finally sinking in, says a regional district in B.C.’s Interior, when it comes to illegal buoys on local lakes.

On Wednesday, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District (CSRD) said for years it has been battling non-compliant buoys on Shuswap Lake and Mara Lake.

But earlier this year, many non-compliant buoys were tagged by Transport Canada, with the owners alerted to remedy the issue or have them later removed.

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“When Transport Canada staff returned to conduct the removal, approximately 80 per cent of the tagged buoys were either removed by owners or brought into compliance with safety regulations,” said the CSRD.

“Of the remaining non-compliant buoys, 26 buoys, including numerous anchors, were removed from the lake.”

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The CSRD says the proliferation of buoys on Shuswap and Mara lakes has been a continual source of public complaints.

Click to play video: 'Lightning strike on Shuswap Lake'
Lightning strike on Shuswap Lake

It added that buoys can be removed if they don’t follow regulations by being the correct size, colour and identification.

“This can be hazardous for boaters and other users of the lake,” said the CSRD, which noted that docks and buoys in lakes within the regional district are also regulated by CSRD Bylaws.

Installing a buoy in Shuswap Lake also requires a CSRD permit.

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“We are thrilled to see people getting the message that non-compliant buoys will be the target of enforcement action,” said Marty Herbert of the CSRD.

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“After a few years of this program being in operation, people know that we are serious about this issue. Now they are taking steps to fix the situation themselves rather than run the risk of their buoy being seized by Transport Canada.”

For more information on buoy regulations, visit Transport Canada’s website.


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