Katie Thompson

Katie Thompson, the city’s risk management official, stands near one of the new Drinking Water Protection Zone road signs which have been placed along Lakeshore Drive. Barrie is among the first municipalities in the province to install the signs. IAN MCINROY/BARRIE EXAMINER/POSTMEDIA

Barrie has new ‘drinking water protection zone’ road signs, which are the new provincial standard.

The city says they’re to create public awareness that certain activities in these areas can have an impact [on] our water supplies.

The signs will be placed within the most vulnerable source water areas – near municipal wells and areas around surface water intakes – during the next few weeks.

The first roads signs were installed last week on Lakeshore Drive, just north of Tiffin Street.

Barrie is among the first municipalities in the province to install the signs.

They were designed by the province in partnership with the Source Protection Regions.

“It’s important that we are all aware of where our drinking water sources are most vulnerable, so that we can help protect them,” said Katie Thompson, Barrie’s risk management official. “The signs will also be a signal to emergency responders, so that public water sources can be protected in the event of a spill.”

The Source Protection Plan for the South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Region, which includes Barrie’s drinking water sources, received approval by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change and came into effect on July 1, 2015.

The plan, which was developed under Ontario’s Clean Water Act, introduces a variety of policies to keep contaminants out of municipal drinking water sources, including the installation of ‘drinking water protection zone’ signs.

About 780 of these signs will be installed in the province, with 23 of those in Barrie.

Source Water Protection is about protecting existing and future sources of drinking water from overuse and contamination. The most effective way to ensure safe and sustainable drinking water is to protect it at its source.

For more information, visit https://www.barrie.ca/Living/Environment/Pages/SourceWaterProtection.aspx

Source: The Barrie Examiner