On Saturday, Surrey RCMP will once again participate in the Surrey Vaisakhi Day Parade, one of the largest Vaisakhi celebrations in the world outside of India. Last year, over 500,000 people participated in this fun and safe family event.
"This is my 6th year at the Surrey Vaisakhi and it is always amazing to see the generosity and spirit of seva celebrated so openly by the South Asian community, says Constable Charanjit Marjara from Surrey RCMP’s Diversity Unit. This Nagar Kirtan provides an opportunity for everyone, including the Surrey RCMP, to proudly celebrate the rich diversity of Surrey.
Surrey RCMP’s Diversity Unit will have an information booth on site with resources about programs and initiatives. Many RCMP officers in attendance will be wearing their traditional red serge. RCMP volunteers will also be engaging with children by providing stickers and tattoos at 76A Avenue and 128th Street.
A number of road closures will be taking place in the City of Surrey this weekend due to the parade. Police ask that members of the public make arrangements to use alternate routes.
Road closures will be in place from 7:30am to 5:00pm on the day of the parade. Increased delays may be expected for travel through and within the area between 72nd Avenue to 88th Avenue, and Scott Road to King George Boulevard. For a full list of road closures and route details please visit the City of Surrey’s website.
The Surrey RCMP typically responds to dozens of incidents of missing children or elderly persons who have become separated from their parents or group at this large event. Fortunately all missing people are eventually reunited with their families.
The Surrey RCMP reminds parade participants that it is important to have a plan in place with your family prior to the event to reduce your risk of separation and what to do if in fact this does occurs, says Constable Marjara.
A PLAN MAY INCLUDE THESE SIMPLE TIPS:
Familiarize your family members with their surroundings and have a pre-planned meeting place
Equip your family members with some form of identification and your contact information
Make sure everyone in your party is aware of the location of the Surrey RCMP missing person’s tent and the location of emergency personnel
Keep a current photo of your child on you in case you need to describe them to police
Keep your children within eyesight at all times
Each year hundreds of local business and individual families present free food offerings to the crowd in celebration of the Parade.
Organizers of event, the Gurdwara Sahib Dasmesh Darbar, along with a number of supporting agencies including Fraser Health, the Surrey RCMP, the City of Surrey (including City of Surrey Bylaws office) are reminding businesses and individuals participating in the Parade-route kiosks and stands to observe the following:
1) Drone policy. Organizers of the Surrey Vaisakhi Parade remind attendees that drones are not permitted without a permit from Transport Canada. As the parade route is within 3 kilometres of Surrey Memorial Hospital’s emergency helipad landing site, we ask drone operators to
ensure they have proper clearance.
2) Check the Surrey Vaisakhi Parade website (surreyvaisakhiparade.com) for information on safe food handling
3) Due to a potential disruption to the airspace caused by a large number of balloons being released accidentally, all participants are asked to respect an absolutely “NO HELIUM BALLOON” policy.
There is a serious safety concern for air traffic due to large numbers floating into the air traffic space above the Parade route. We are asking for corporate and individual support in respecting the ‘no helium balloons’ policy on parade day.
4) Anyone setting up a food stand at this years event are asked to ensure that all tents are NOT set up on the sidewalks alongside the route. This causes a significant public hazard.
For more information about the event including the parade route visit: www.surreyvaisakhiparade.com.