Welland asking residents not to float around on the water

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Welland is asking residents not to partake in their own floatfest this weekend.

Floatfest, which was scheduled for July 5th, has been cancelled due to the pandemic and Provincial Emergency Orders allowing for gatherings of ten or fewer people.

Organizers and Welland's city staff are discouraging residents from gathering on the waterway with floatation devices. 

The waterway is unsupervised; therefore, gatherings on the waterway are potentially dangerous and could lead to serious injury.

In addition, Niagara residents are practicing physical distancing of two or more metres due to COVID-19, which would be difficult to maintain on the waterway.

To ensure physical distancing guidelines, the city’s By-law staff will monitor the waterway the weekend of July 4-5.

“This is a challenging summer for our residents,” said Adam Eckhart, Deputy Fire Chief. “Floatfest is one of Welland’s signature summer events, and everyone looks forward to it. Without Floatfest event coordinators in place to ensure safety, it’s a hazard for people to continue the event without any safety protocols in place. Floatfest is cancelled this year, and we’re asking residents to respect this decision.”