Tri-County Vanguard

RCMP lay charges after fire hydrants tampered with


Following tips from the public and sourced video footage from impacted areas, an 18-year-old man has been charged with mischief as part of an investigat­ion into the recent tampering of fire hydrants.

On July 8, the RCMP went to a Trinity Place home in the town of Yarmouth and arrested Carter Gilks, who has been charged with common nuisance and six counts of mischief.

He has also been charged with four counts of theft.

Gilks was later released by the courts and is scheduled to appear in Yarmouth Provincial Court on Aug. 14.

At approximat­ely 9 a.m. on June 29, the Yarmouth Town RCMP received a report of mischief to several fire hydrants. The report related to incidents on Brunswick, King, Beacon, Main, Marsha and Water streets.

“RCMP officers learned that several hydrants had been tampered with, including the removal of the hydrant caps and the activation of the hydrants,” reads a media release.

A home on Marsha Avenue also saw its basement flooded.

At the time of the incidents, Yarmouth Fire Department Chief Mike Deveau said tampering with fire hydrants is a very serious matter as it can lead to safety issues for people and property.

“If somebody was to activate a hydrant improperly they could break the hydrant, which would potentiall­y leave an area unserviced by a hydrant, which could increase the time required for us to get water to a structure fire,” he said.

Deveau also said people – firefighte­rs and members of the public, including anyone tampering with hydrants – could be injured from pressure buildup if hydrants are left in a charged state as a result of the tampering.

“If a firefighte­r or a citizen was to inadverten­tly take those (hydrant) caps off under pressure they could get hurt," he said.

The RCMP immediatel­y launched an investigat­ion into the matter, saying it is appreciati­ve of the informatio­n and tips provided by the public.

“RCMP officers followed up on tips received from the public, obtained video footage of the area and as a result identified a person involved,” states a July 11 media release.

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