A business on Okanagan Landing Road had its water cut by bylaw on Oct. 7, 2019, after a parcel was found being used as a cannabis grow operation. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)

Cannabis grow-op has water cut by Vernon bylaw

A notice appeared in the door of an Okanagan Landing Road business on Monday

An Okanagan Landing Road business had its water cut after it was “found to contain a cannabis grow operation,” the notice from the City of Vernon Bylaw said.

“We all had our hunches,” Okanagan College Aerospace Campus student Karan Sian said.

“Bylaw has been here for the past couple of days,” the student who studies next door said. “Today it was empty and there was a notice on the front door saying what was going on.”

The notice in the window was a “Discontinuance of Service” issued by the City of Vernon Bylaw on Monday, Oct. 7, after building inspector Dan Gellein determined there was a risk of contamination to the city’s water distribution.

“There is no apparent mechanism to prevent back-flow into the city’s water distribution from the parcel,” the notice reads.

City of Vernon communications manager Christy Poirier said the risk involved is a back-siphonage of contaminants that can be caused by chemicals and fertilizers used in grow-ops unless back-flow prevention devices are installed “in accordance with the BC Plumbing Code.”

“Water service will be restored when all risk to the City of Vernon potable water supply has been eliminated,” Poirier said.

Sian said he and his classmates figured the large warehouse was housing a grow-op.

“There’s nothing really coming in or going out and there was only like two people chilling in the hanger,” Sian said.

The notice issued by Gellein at 3:58 p.m. on Monday said water will remain shut off to the parcel “until such time as a mechanism to prevent back-flow is installed, inspected and approved by the city.”

Part of the Safe Premises Bylaw states no person may occupy the premises until repairs of the unauthorized alterations are completed by a licensed professional.

The Vernon Morning Star has reached out to RCMP and the story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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