Lets hope you were careful where you parked in Ottawa over the Canada Day weekend, because you could have been hit with a fine or had your car towed too!
On Sunday, July 3, the City of Ottawa's By-Law and Regulatory Services said that it towed at least 121 vehicles and handed out a whopping 513 parking tickets since June 29. These tickets were issued under some stricter rules, as a motor vehicle control zone has been in effect in the downtown core since Wednesday morning.
\u201c\u25b6\ufe0f 3 tickets unlicensed mobile refreshment vehicles\n\u25b6\ufe0f 1 ticket public urination\n\nWe thank all residents and visitors who celebrated Canada Day while respecting Ottawa residents and laws. #OttCity 2/2\u201d— Ottawa By-law (@Ottawa By-law) 1656881530
As the Ottawa Police Service anticipated a "larger event footprint" for the national holiday, certain downtown roads were barricaded off and controlled by officers.
Police said that anyone who's had their vehicle towed due to their "involvement in an unlawful demonstration" should expect to pay some fees. The City of Ottawa charges passenger vehicles and motorcycles $850 for this. Meanwhile, towed transport trucks or motor homes will cost $1,400. Plus, there is an additional storage fee set by the towing company that might need to be paid off.
If your vehicle was towed you must bring your driver's licence with you to 474 Elgin St. to pay the associated fees.
Tickets issued during the fine hike
\u201cIn-person Canada Day celebrations will return to #OttCity and result in some road closures and restrictions.\nTo learn more about traffic impacts across the city, including the motor vehicle control zone downtown, visit: https://t.co/ErH0FTt5lq\u201d— City of Ottawa (@City of Ottawa) 1656015604
The City also bumped up the fines for certain bylaws ahead of Canada Day as well.
Anyone caught shouting, urinating on a street or sidewalk, and littering could have been dinged with a $1,000 fine until further notice. Under the hiked fines, six tickets were given for blocked highways and three tickets were issued for unauthorized fireworks. Another ticket was given for "a pile material" on a highway.
Ottawa's By-law and Regulatory Service said it also gave out three tickets for unlicensed mobile refreshment vehicles, and one person was caught urinating in public. Uh oh!
Canada Day freedom march
The tickets were given out as police braced for Canada Day celebrations, which included a freedom march following the month-long freedom convoy earlier this year.
The first convoy demonstration started on January 22 and initially opposed a U.S.-Canada cross-border vaccination policy for essential workers, and related events have continued into the summer months.
The Canada Day freedom march started at Wellington Street in front of Parliament Hill. Demonstrators handed out anti-vaccine and anti-mandate material, and shouted "freedom" as they walked down the streets.
There was a multi-jurisdictional police presence with officers stationed at several intersections in the downtown core. At least six people were arrested during a Canada Marches event, a group opposed to COVID-19 health regulations, on June 30.