Hikers discovered quite a mess in a secluded wooded area located between Highway 19 and the train tracks near Springwood school in Parksville.
The garbage was discovered by Parksville Qualicum Beach resident Lisa Alexander and her friend while they walked the trails adjacent to the train tracks just outside of Parksville. They decided to walk through woods near the highway when they heard chainsaws.
“We came across this and it just blew us away,” said Alexander. “I snapped a couple of pictures and it freaked me out because I have never seen anything like this all my years growing up on the Island. It’s sad. It’s really sad.”
The garbage left behind was strewn all over the area. It included propane tanks, toys, a couch, office chairs, clothes, tarp, ski boots, needles and more.
Alexander said it’s unlikely anyone would have known about the mess had they not stumbled upon it. She felt compelled to make the community aware of what’s happening in the woods. She posted it via social media and received plenty of sad reaction.
“I have no idea who’s responsible for this,” said Alexander. “I just know who did this is super careless and doesn’t respect our environment. Terrible.”
Alexander is hoping steps will be taken to clean the area.
Contacted Tuesday, Tom Armet, RDN manager of building and bylaw services, said the wooded area is private property.
“We will be contacting the owners to clean it up,” said Armet. “From the picture you (PQB News) sent and the one we received from the City of Parksville, who also notified us about it because it’s in Electoral Area G, it does look like it’s been there a while.”
Under an RDN bylaw, owners are responsible for the property and are required to clean it. Armet said they will have to find out what the owners will do to address this.
“It could have potential safety and health impacts for people going in there,” said Armet. “Part of our engagement with the owners on properties such as this is to question ways they can mitigate these issues from occurring either through signage or physical barriers. It’s a large property and I think that would be very challenging for the owners to do.”