Island Timberlands will continue to restrict public access to its land if illegal dumping or vandalism continue to damage their property or threaten the security of their personnel, says Island Timberlands manager of sustainable timberlands and community affairs Morgan Kennah.
Illegal activity, including vandalism, theft of equipment or fuel, and the dumping of “copious volumes” of garbage on Island Timberlands land have led to the company implementing extra security measures due to the significant costs they have incurred.
“We have a 24-hour mobile security team in place to monitor and address some of the concerning activity we are experiencing,” Kennah said in an e-mail.
The company has come under fire from people unhappy that IT has been locking some of its gates, preventing access.
Kennah assured that “trails on Island Timberlands property are not imminently threatened to closure.”
RCMP Cpl. Jen Allan said that the Port Alberni detachment has 14 illegal dumping incidents on file between January 2014 and March 23, 2015, however specified that not all of those would be cases of dumping on IT land.
In terms of prosecuting any possible offenders, “ideally what we would get would be a vehicle description with a licence plate and a description of the person dumping the material,” Allan said.
However, if identifying material such as bills or letters are found in the garbage, the RCMP is able to initiate an investigation.
“Just because their personal documents are in the garbage doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re the source of the dumping, but it’s certainly a good place to start.”
Kennah said that the company “will continue to provide for respectful recreational opportunities” and that IT encourages the public to share their concerns through their website.