Addressing Sunken Boats in the Alouette River

Updated June 28, 2023

All waterways in Pitt Meadows including the Alouette River, fall under provincial and federal jurisdictions and are outside of the City’s responsibility.

Staff have reported abandoned boats and dilapidated structures found along the Alouette River to senior levels of government and have encouraged residents to do the same. Sadly, abandoned boats are a significant issue across the province. Given the high number, responding agencies must prioritize the order of their response according to the risk of hydrocarbons spilling into the water. 

The City is assessing enforcement options for any structures located on land, as well as working with non-profit organizations to apply for federal funding when it becomes available to remove the boats and structures.  

The City of Pitt Meadows is committed to protecting our natural environment and is working with the different levels of government which have the jurisdiction and non-profit organizations in an effort remedy the situation of the abandoned boats in the Alouette River.

To report abandoned or sinking structures:

Start by contacting the Canadian Coast Guard at 1-800-889-8852. A Duty Officer with the Environmental Response program will assess the case under the authorities in the Canada Shipping Act. If no action is required under that Act, the file will be transferred to a Vessel of Concern Officer at Transport Canada. This officer will evaluate the case under the Wrecked Abandoned or Hazardous Vessels Act.

If the abandoned or sinking structure poses an immediate obstruction to navigation, contact Transport Canada via email at In such cases, Transport Canada can take action under the Canadian Navigable Waters Act.

If harmful substances are being introduced into fish-bearing waters, contact BC Spill Reporting at 1-800-663-3456. Relevant agencies such as Environment Canada and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans will be notified.