Reflection on this Week’s Events

Icy-weather

Earlier this week, the Stittsville community came together once again to support one another during an extreme icy weather event. Many homes remained without power for over 24 hours as one household in particular found itself the victim of an electrical fire that escalated into a situation in which two volunteer firefighters fell through a collapsed floor.
I am happy to share that everyone involved in the incident is now okay and no life-threatening injuries were sustained. One of the firefighters was discharged from hospital the following day and the other’s condition continues to improve as they continue through the recovery process.
hydro-ottawa-logoesa

Upon looking into the cause of the fire, it was determined that some customers experienced damage to their surge protector on their electrical panels. To facilitate safe and expedient re-energization, Hydro Ottawa contracted the services of a certified electrical contractor to disconnect the damaged surge protector at no cost to affected households. As a result, I reached out to David McConnell, General Manager of the Electrical Safety Authority who had the following information to provide on the devices for any other concerned homeowners:

  • What is the function of a surge protector?
    • Surge protectors are engineered to absorb voltage spikes or disturbances which can occur for a variety of reasons such as lightning strikes or solar flares. By the surge being absorbed by the surge protector, it should protect any sensitive equipment downstream such as computers, televisions or motors which are connected to the wiring at the time of the event.
  • Does every home have one?
    • No, they are not required to be installed by any local codes or standards. Some power bars do have built in surge protection which is intended to protect any equipment plugged into it from a disturbance.
  • How often do they need to be checked/do they have a shelf life?
    • They do not have a shelf life however should be checked regularly to ensure that they are still functioning properly. Most surge protectors have indicating lights which will be illuminated when the device is operational. However if the lights are not illuminated this would suggest that the device is no longer providing adequate protection and should be replaced.
  • Why do some homes need to be inspected during this particular power surge and not others?
    • After any power surge, homeowners should ensure that the electrical equipment is functioning properly. The best way to do this is to hire a Licensed Electrical contractor to verify that there was no damage to any of the systems in the home. The most common issues are sensitive devices such as electronics but hardwired smoke detectors can also be impacted as well as GFCI receptacles, which help protect people from shocks when near water.
  • Anything else you might consider useful information?
    • Hire a Licensed Electrical Contractor (LEC) for any electrical work that needs to be done. You can find a list of LEC’s on our web site at esasafe.com. I’ve as well attached some information you are welcome to share with the public. We are currently in the process of distributing this letter to the affected residences.

As mentioned, surge protectors are not required by code for electrical panels. However, if residents who had their protectors removed by Hydro crews are still interesting in having one, a new surge protector can be installed without cutting power to the house by a licensed electrician for about $300.
I hope that residents find this information useful.
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I am happy to also share the following comments from Fire Chief, Gerry Pingitore as thanks to the community:

 

As Fire Chief, I am always overwhelmed with gratitude by the community’s care and thoughtfulness for Ottawa Fire Services staff. I am happy to report that the firefighters involved in yesterday’s fire on Snowberry Way are doing well.

[…] We appreciate the community’s concern for the firefighters that serve their community at Stations 81 and 46. We appreciate their desire to assist and show their support during this difficult time. Your continued encouragement, support and prayers are the best and only gift we can hope to receive. Alternatively, residents are invited to visit Fire Station 81 on Saturday, June 2 for Doors Open Ottawa. This will give the community the opportunity to meet the men and women who dedicate their time and efforts as volunteer firefighters.

 

 

Heavy freezing rain on Sunday and Monday caused downed trees, power lines and damaged hydro poles. More than 72,000 customers were out of power at the height of the storm, with more than 200 separate outages needing repair.
I would like to openly thank the Hydro Ottawa crews who worked around the clock this week, checking residents’ electrical panels door-to-door until the power was able to be safely restored. I would also like to thank GRC staff for their consideration in helping out the community by providing an area where residents may warm up with a hot beverage and take a hot shower as well as the kind and generous residents through social media who offered to open their doors to those in need.

Last and certainly not least, I would like to send my sincerest thanks and best wishes to the Ottawa Fire Services team and the two firefighters injured during Monday’s blaze. I applaud our men and women who have taken on the responsibilities of being a fire fighter. These individuals have chosen a path of selfless service – a service to protect the community. Stittsville is very fortunate to have such a dedicated team of experienced men and women who do so much for the community both on and off the job.

 

From the bottom of my heart, on behalf of the community, THANK YOU.

The Right Honourable David Johnston and Mrs. Sharon Johnston receive the Key to the City

This week, Mayor Jim Watson presented the Key to the City to The Right Honourable David Johnston and Mrs. Sharon Johnston, at a ceremony at City Hall.

 

The Key to the City is Ottawa’s most prestigious award in which an ornamental key is presented to esteemed residents, visitors and others whom the City of Ottawa wishes to honour. This practice has a symbolic meaning evoking medieval walled cities, the gates of which would be guarded during the day and locked at night. The key symbolizes the freedom of the recipient to enter and leave the city at will as a trusted friend of city residents.

 

The Right Honourable David Johnston was recognized for an unwavering commitment to education, learning and innovation, youth, philanthropy and volunteerism, with the distinct honour of serving as Governor General of Canada from 2010 to 2017.

 

Mrs. Sharon Johnston was recognized for an illustrious career in rehabilitation science with a steadfast commitment to mental health and wellness advocacy, and her dedication to supporting Indigenous youth and families.

 

During their time in Ottawa, the Johnstons encouraged all Canadians to join in the building of a smarter, more caring nation.

 

To learn more about this honour and to see all past recipients, please visit https://ottawa.ca/en/city-hall/your-city-government/policies-and-administrative-structure/office-protocol/awards-and-recognition#key-city

 

To watch the presentation recorded by Rogers TV, please visit http://www.rogerstv.com/show?lid=12&rid=4&sid=2151

It’s a Chilly Spring

On Sunday, April 15th, I was thrilled to once again have my head shaved by Mayor Watson in support of cancer research with Hair Donation Ottawa.

 

The event was, as always, a lot of fun in support of a great cause. Close to $100,000 and counting was raised for the event.

 

I would like to share a big thank you to Helene Hutchings and Perry Pavlovic for all of their work in ensuring this event is a great success year after year. With this year’s numbers added up, the campaign has now contributed over $550,000 to cancer research. Wow!

I would also like to thank Mayor Watson for taking the time to once again ensure my haircut is looking as sharp as ever as well as Algonquin College for hosting once again, and all of the volunteers who took the time to conduct haircuts, organize the event, or have their hair chopped off for donations. Your help is invaluable to the success of these events.

 

I will be certain to share the total numbers in my newsletter once I receive them!

Board of Health Update This Week

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On Monday, the Ottawa Board of Health held its second meeting of 2018.

 

The Board discussed its report on Reducing Harms from Gambling, which provides data on the issue of problem gambling in Ottawa and outlines a four-point plan, and related funding request, to reduce the harms from gambling in our community.

 

In approving the report, the Board also reiterated the position taken in 2013 against increasing access to and availability of gambling in Ottawa and recognized that the funding request outlined in the report may not be enough in the long run to fully enable OPH and partners to effectively deal with this issue.

 

The Board also discussed the Acting Medical Officer of Health’s Submissions to Proposed Provincial Regulations Under the Smoke Free Ontario Act, 2017 and the Cannabis Act, 2017.

 

In approving this report, the Board received and approved the recommendations contained in two (2) submissions made to the Province in March in response to public consultations on regulations under the Smoke Free Ontario Act, 2017 (SFOA) and Cannabis Act, 2017.

 

Specifically, the submission on the SFOA talked about establishing restrictions on places of use and restrictions or requirements for tobacco and vapour products with respect to places of sale, flavoured products, sale/supply to minors, signage, display and promotion, packaging and health warnings. For its part, the submission on the Cannabis Act addressed establishing specific restrictions and exemptions for where non-medical cannabis and other forms of medical cannabis may be used.

 

The Board approved the following items on consent:

 

The meeting as a whole is available on Youtube and interested residents are encouraged to view it at the link listed below:

By-Law Regulatory Statistics Q1 – Ward 6

service-ottawa

I would like to take a moment to supply residents with a breakdown of the quarterly by-law regulatory service request report.
Every three months, by-law services releases a ward-by-ward summary of general request types. These requests range from a multitude of services offered by calling or emailing 3-1-1 (311@ottawa.ca).
By-law & Regulatory Services experienced an overall increase of 8% in total call volume compared to Q1 of 2016.
The full report can be found by clicking here and Stittsville’s individual report can be found here.
As you can observe, parking was the most-requested by-law item within our ward (140) however it only comprised 1.5% of the city’s total parking requests. Alternatively, Stittsville’s greatest reflection against the city as a whole were requests regarding parks (3%) which only saw 2 requests.

Learning from these trends means that as a City, we will be better equipped for knowing where to invest resources in the future.
I encourage residents to take a moment and see what trends they can spot. Of course, as your City Councillor, I am always keen to hear your well thought-out ideas regarding how to improve our community. You can do so by emailing me at Shad.Qadri@ottawa.ca.

New Trees in Stittsville

treeoak

Things are growing in Stittsville!

 

The City of Ottawa’s spring caliper tree planting program is scheduled to begin the week of May 7th and will run, weather permitting, until mid-June. This includes tree planting in parks, at City facilities, and along streets.

 

Residents should also expect to see utility locate flags and paint on the ground prior to planting. Planting takes place through the City in following ward order: 5, 19, 1, 2, 11, 13, 12, 14, 15, 7, 8, 9, 23, 4, 5, 6, 3, 22W, 16, 17, 18, 10, 22E, 20, 21.
For a full list of locations in Ward 6 along with the types of trees scheduled for planting, please click here.

OC Transpo makes spring service adjustments

OCTranspo_red_small

I would like to remind residents that OC Transpo’s spring service starts Sunday, April 22. These changes are part of OC Transpo’s regular schedule adjustments, which take place four times a year – April, June, September, and December.

 

Seasonal Service Changes:

 

Rack and Roll Program – The Rack and Roll program of bicycle racks on buses will be re-instated this spring, running through to the fall. The Rack and Roll network consists of Routes 12, 61, 62, 85, 88, 91, 94, 95, 97, 98, 99, 101, and 106,  provide this service on major routes across the City. The majority of trips on these routes will operate with a bus equipped with a bike rack.

 

Summer U-Pass starts May 1 and Winter U-Pass expiresFrom May through August, eligible full-time students at Algonquin College, Carleton University, University of Ottawa and Saint Paul University benefit from the Summer U-Pass, which can be obtained or renewed on campus. Students who are not full-time during the summer are reminded that their U-Pass will expire on April 30 and to switch to Presto for their summer transit. Some students with lower incomes who are not receiving a U-Pass may be eligible for the EquiPass. EquiPass applications should be submitted early to allow for timely approval.

 

Reminder: Paper ticket use ends April 30:

 

This week, Mayor Jim Watson, Transit Commission Chair Stephen Blais, Garry Griffin, Shoppers Drug Mart District Manager, and Annalise Czerny, PRESTO’s Executive Vice-President, were at a announced that Presto card services will be rolling out to retailers across Ottawa.

 

Transit customers will be able to purchase monthly passes, load funds, check their balance, and set age-based discounts at 66 Shoppers Drug Mart, Loblaws and Real Canadian Superstore locations in Ottawa. The new retail locations are currently being rolled out in a phased approach, with all stores expected to have Presto services available by the end of May.

 

When customers put funds on their Presto card at one of the retailer locations, the balance will be available immediately.

 

Old tickets can be used on buses (except at Greenboro Station) until April 30, 2018. Customers can also exchange old tickets towards new fare products at OC Transpo Customer Service Centres until August 31, 2018.

 

Presto cards purchased at Shoppers, Loblaws and Superstore locations will have a new black design. However, whether cards are black or green, they will still function exactly the same way.

 

So far, two locations providing the service have been announced for Stittsville – the Shoppers Drug Marts at 1300 Stittsville Main Street and 5709 Hazeldean Road. For an up-to-date listing of all participating locations, visit octranspo.com or prestocard.ca.

 

For more information and to view the spring changes in their entirety, please visit www.octranspo.com.

STEP Results from March

In March, the Ottawa Police Service and Gatineau Police Service’s Selective Traffic Enforcement Program focused on distracted driving and speeding, resulting in 2920 charges being laid against road users.

 

 Targeted enforcement theme Resulting charges

Ottawa

Resulting charges

Gatineau

Distracted driving 167 213
Speeding 956 1584
Total charges during February 1123 1797

 

It is great to see the results of this program in full effect as police work toward educating drivers on dangerous driving faux-pas and keeping our roads safe!

 

The Selective Traffic Enforcement Program helps to raise awareness of easily preventable traffic violations by operating in coordination with the Safer Roads Ottawa Program, a partnership between Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service, Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa Public Health and the Transportation Services Department. The service is committed to preventing or eliminating road deaths and serious injuries for all people in the City of Ottawa, through culture change, community engagement, and development of a sustainable safe transportation environment.

City announces shortlist of five teams to design new central library

library

A new milestone has been achieved in the project to create a new Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada joint facility. A City of Ottawa Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process for professional design services, initiated in May of 2017, has resulted in the selection of five shortlisted teams from 33 submissions received. The shortlisted teams have been invited to participate in the Request for Proposals (RFP) process.

 

The shortlisted teams are:

  • Bing Thom Architects (Canada) – GRC Architects (Canada)
  • Diamond Schmitt Architects (Canada) – KWC Architects (Canada)
  • Mecanoo International b.v. (Holland) – NORR Architects & Engineers Ltd (Canada)
  • Patkau Architects (Canada) – MSDL Architects (Canada) – GRC Architects (Canada)
  • Schmidt/hammer/lassen/ architects (Denmark) – KPMB Architects (Canada) – Hobin Architecture Inc. (Canada)

 

As outlined as a requirement in the RFQ, the shortlisted teams have demonstrated a proven track record in architectural design excellence with projects of a similar size, scope and complexity, and relevant experience in buildings of national, provincial, institutional or civic importance – including libraries, archives, cultural institutions, performing arts centres or museums.

 

The two-phase procurement process for professional design services will continue in the coming months with the RFP. Once an architectural team is selected, the design development work will begin, including initial concepts and schematic designs. Broad public consultation will be an integral part of the design process. Construction tendering will follow after the design work is completed.

Ticks and Lyme Disease

Insects are a sign of spring but there is one insect in particular this year to keep an eye on – ticks and the threat they have to carry and spread Lyme Disease.

Lyme disease is an infection caused by a bacteria transmitted through the bite of an infected tick. Not all ticks carry Lyme disease. In Ontario, Lyme disease is spread by the bite of a black-legged tick, commonly known as the deer tick. Most humans are infected through the bite of an immature tick called a nymph, which is very small and are most active in the spring. Adult ticks are larger and active during the late summer and fall.

Since Ottawa is now considered an at-risk area for Lyme disease, it is important to contact your doctor if you believe a tick has been attached to you for 24 or more hours, or if you are unsure how long the tick has been attached to you, so that your doctor can determine if you need treatment with antibiotics. Tick keys are a great tool for removing ticks and are available for sale at local retailers. Treatment with antibiotics would be considered when:

  • the tick has been attached for 24 or more hours or is fully or partially engorged and
  • it has been less than or equal to 72 hours since the tick has been removed.

 

If the tick was attached for less than 24 hours and its body does not appear swollen from feeding or if you removed a tick and more than 72 hours have passed, you should still be on the lookout for signs and symptoms of Lyme disease for the next 30 days. If you do develop symptoms, consult your health care provider.

 

For more information on ticks and removal of an imbedded tick please visit Ottawa.ca\LymeDisease.