New Trail Markers Improve Safety on Traboulay Trail
PORT COQUITLAM, BC – Jan. 24, 2022… New trail markers going up along Traboulay PoCo Trail starting this week will allow trail users to easily pinpoint their location when calling 911.
A project of Port Coquitlam Fire & Emergency Services (FES) and a first in the Tri-Cities area, the 14 new markers at key trail entry points will feature both a location code known by area emergency responders, and a QR code to a map showing the location. Because the popular 25-kilometre loop trail traverses a varied landscape of forest and creek, meadow and marsh, riverfront and urban development, it is often difficult for both visitors and locals to accurately identify where they are during an emergency and to 911 operators.
“Trail users often act as our eyes and ears out in the community, and these new markers will help ensure emergency responders arrive on the scene as quickly as possible,” Mayor Brad West said. “It’s not only a simple and effective way to improve safety in our community, but it’s also a great example of the kinds of innovative solutions our staff are always coming up with to deliver City services better and more efficiently.”
The program began as part of Port Coquitlam’s wildfire preparation efforts, which includes participating in a half-million dollar regional BC FireSmart grant. The City’s fire crews responded to 45 bush fires in 2021, many of them alongside or in view of the trail system. Additionally, 911 calls come in from trail users for medical assistance and other emergencies.
Installation of the markers begins today and will continue over the next few months. The location codes include a letter and number and will be easy to spot when entering or traveling along the Traboulay PoCo Trail.
The regional 911 operators serving Port Coquitlam are aware of the new code system and will dispatch the appropriate emergency responder – fire, ambulance or police – to the identified location. Port Coquitlam’s fire truck computers have also been updated with detailed information about each code’s location, such as obstacles or any hazards.
Trail and project information, including a map showing the location codes, can be found at portcoquitlam.ca/pocotrail.
“This is a great update to one of Port Coquitlam’s most well-loved attractions, used by tens of thousands of people each year from our community and elsewhere,” noted Cllr. Steve Darling, Council’s designate for public safety and recreation matters. “We encourage trail users to make note of the prominent codes on the markers as they enter the trail or pass by them.”
Over time, more markers will be added along the trail as funds become available.
The trail identification program is one of the budgeted projects in the 2022 capital plan that is investing $35 million in important infrastructure, equipment and other assets. Other community safety initiatives included the capital plan include new streetlights, sidewalks, and pedestrian safety and traffic calming measures for neighbourhoods, schools and parks such as speed humps, sidewalk extensions and crosswalks
Manager of Communications & Administrative Services
City of Port Coquitlam