Following public recommendations, most of Montreal’s splash pads are up and running but some suburban municipality parks remain dry despite record-breaking temperatures.
The West Island municipalities of Pointe-Claire and Kirkland have decided not to open up their water park installations during the summer-like heat, stressing safety concerns due to the ongoing pandemic.
“Our municipal facilities simply do not lend themselves well to the required preventative and social distancing measures,” a Kirkland city statement read.
Pointe-Claire officials say they are waiting on the authorization from the province’s public health authority before going ahead with their opening.
Yesterday Montreal public health recommended the city open its water parks to allow families to cool off as temperatures are expected to hover around 40 C over the next few days.
With malls, libraries and pools still closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the onset of hot weather means there are few places for residents to get relief from the heat.
Dorval city work crews raced to get the water flowing Wednesday morning at Walters Park.
The municipality will be opening up one of two splash pads for the summer.
“The direction is to go ahead and open up the splash pads,” Dorval spokesperson Sebastien Gauthier said.
The Walters Park water games will be open for the rest of the summer but Gauthier says the park’s installations will remains off-limits to children.
Officials will be monitoring the situation closely to make sure physical distancing measures are respected, Gauthier said.
“For now we are asking people to wash their hands before and after, like everywhere else distancing will be an issue, but we hope people will respect the provincial guidelines,” Gauthier said.
The city stressed they would consider closing the water park if the rules were not respected.
“It’s up to each municipality to decide if they want to go ahead with that but we’re not the only one opening the parks.”
Several splash pads are now fully operational in the off-island municipalities of Brossard and Longueuil.
Both say their installations are open temporarily from Wednesday until the end of the heat warning, which is expect to last until Friday.
Water fountains and park facilities will remain closed indefinitely.
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