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Pump don't Dump: Free sewage pump-outs, extended hours and enhanced service at civic marinas

June 23 2017

The City of Vancouver and Park Board are offering free pump outs, extended hours and enhanced service at civic marinas to help keep our beaches and waterways clean.

As the weather warms and boat traffic increases, E. coli counts from illegal dumping also rise in False Creek and other waters surrounding Vancouver. Boat sewage is a key source of fecal bacteria in False Creek.

All pleasure crafts in Vancouver waters can access free assisted pump-out services at Burrard and Heather civic marinas. The summer service hours are:

  • 7:00am to 6:00pm daily at Heather Civic Marina
  • 7:00am to 7:00 pm daily at Burrard Civic Marina
  • Burrard Marina offers additional summer pump-out hours till 9pm, assisted by a fuel barge operator
  • Burrard and Heather Civic Marinas offer free unassisted pump-outs 24/7 all year round

Ongoing work by the City and partners on water quality in False Creek has discovered that one of the main contributors to E. coli contamination is the discharge of untreated sewage waste from marinas and recreational vessels.

It is illegal to dump sewage from boats within False Creek, English Bay, or the Inner Harbour.  Although offenders can face prosecution and fines of up to $10,000, initial enforcement will focus on education and warnings.

Over the coming months, the City and Park Board will:

  • Work toward installation of a mobile pump-out service in False Creek for recreational boaters
  • Test effective solutions for identifying offenders, including the use of divers.
  • Continue to step up enforcement of boats dumping sewage waste. We will work with the VPD Marine Unit and City’s environmental Protection Officers on measures escalating from education and warning to prosecutions.

Learn more about where you can pump your ship.