300 calls keep Vancouver firefighters busy Halloween night

·1 min read

Vancouver firefighters were kept busy Halloween night, responding to a three-fold increase in calls and fires.

According to Vancouver Fire Rescue acting Assistant Chief Dave Rosenlund, 300 calls came in Oct. 31 and into Nov. 1, up from the nightly average of 100. Forty of those calls were for actual fires.

"That's probably three times more than we have on a regular night. And of those fire calls, there's an estimated $450,000 worth of damage that was caused by the fires," he said.

Rosenlund said damage to property from fire and water, along with vehicle and motor home fires were some of the incidents that went into the dollar amount estimate.

He said crews noticed what nearly every resident of the city did: An unprecedented amount of fireworks were set off on Saturday night and into Sunday morning on what was the final night they were legal in the city for residential use.

"From what I heard from the guys, yeah, the fireworks were crazy," he said.

"People were getting out of hand and it lasted past midnight, [which] was supposed to be the stop time... being it was the last night that we're going to have them."

The ban on the sale and use of consumer fireworks came into effect on Nov. 1 in Vancouver, accompanied by a $1,000 fine for anyone caught in violation.

Rosenlund could not say how many of the fires were caused by fireworks.

Vancouver police were equally busy on Halloween. Chief Adam Palmer tweeted that officers responded to over 800 calls and several stabbings.