St. Thomas, March 25, 2019 - Effective May 1, 2019 Kettle Creek Conservation Authority's
(KCCA) conservation areas are limiting smoking and vaping at Lake Whittaker and
Dalewood Conservation Areas to registered campsites and designated smoking areas.
"Conservation Areas are great places for people to be active and connect with nature,"
says Elizabeth VanHooren, general manager for KCCA, "Further health benefits are
gained when our outdoor spaces are smoke-free. An outdoor smoking policy protects
our environment, reduces litter in our natural spaces and ensures our visitors are
not exposed to the dangers of second-hand smoke."
"It is important for our visitors to be aware of these changes as people begin to
plan their summer vacations," says VanHooren. Maps showing the designated smoking
areas are available on KCCA's web site and will be available in the upcoming 2019
visitor's guide. Physical signs will also be posted in designated smoking areas.
KCCA defines smoking and vaping as outlined in the Smoke Free Ontario Act. "Smoking"
means smoking (inhaling and exhaling) or holding lighted tobacco or cannabis (medical
or recreational). "Vaping" means inhaling or exhaling vapour from an electronic
cigarette (e-cigarette) or holding an activated e-cigarette, whether or not the
vapour contains nicotine.
Campers are reminded that smoking is limited to their registered campsite and designated
smoking areas. Campers who have already booked for 2019 but no longer wish to camp
due to the updated rule may apply for a full refund provided a refund request form
is submitted prior to May 1, 2019. Staff will continue to evaluate options for further
smoke free initiatives in the future. A survey will be circulated and based on feedback
from visitors, KCCA may introduce additional policies including designating smoke-free
campsites in certain areas of the conservation area and/or extending smoke-free
policies to other day-use areas and hiking trails.