The Hub City Lions are ensuring residents adhere to a City of Nanaimo bylaw requiring visible street addresses.
Business owners and residents are required to have address numbers that can be seen from the street and contrast with the colour of the surface they are attached to, according to the city’s bylaw. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they are visible at night and to remedy this the society is selling reflective signs as both a community service and a fundraiser.
“The motto is, ‘If [first responders] can’t find you, they can’t help you.’ The RCMP, ambulance and fire have all endorsed this program,” said Peter Thomas, long-time Lion and society secretary, adding that in an emergency situation, a visible address could mean the difference between life and death.
It is something echoed by Karen Lindsay, emergency program manager for the city.
“The reason we require them is, for emergency purposes, time is of the essence when we’re looking, as far as response goes,” said Lindsay. “So the more visible the numbers are, the easier it is for us to find you and it facilitates improving our ability to get to you faster.”
The Lions society will be at Nanaimo North Town Centre every Saturday between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., selling the signs for $40 and a maximum of five numbers can adorn the sign – the letters A, B, C and D are available as well.
“The material now is exactly the same as road signs … they’re in blue, they’re [15 by 46 centimetres] and the [characters] people want to put on them are [7.63 cm],” Thomas said, with 7.63 cm being the minimum height of address numbers in the bylaw.
The numbers or letters can be arranged horizontally, vertically and on either side of the sign plate.
“The numbers go on separate onto the plate,” Thomas said. “There’s four holes drilled, two at the top, two at the bottom and we supply the stainless steel screws.”
Having a visible address is not only beneficial to emergency services but to people who deliver take-out food, according to Thomas.
“People don’t like cold pizza,” he quipped.