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Foul smell attributed to incident in north Burnaby

Residents throughout Metro Vancouver and Burnaby noted a strong chemical odour Sunday morning.
Metro Vancouver has issued an air quality bulletin related to an incident at the Parkland Refining in Burnaby. | The Canadian Press/Jonathan Hayward

Metro Vancouver has attributed the strong chemical smell noted throughout Vancouver this morning to an incident at the Parkland refinery in north Burnaby.

On Sunday morning, a strong odour in Burnaby and Vancouver led to officials receiving more than 100 complaints from residents.

An air quality bulletin has been issued by government officials for the northwest and northeast portions of the region, with members of the public advised to stay indoors if they can smell the odour in their area, close windows, doors and air intakes to reduce their exposure.

People with chronic underlying medical conditions including heart disease, lung disease, asthma, and/or diabetes, or those who are sensitive to fine particulate air pollution, are advised to reduce outdoor physical activity until the bulletin is lifted.

Anyone experiencing chest discomfort, shortness of breath, or wheezing as a result of the poor air should limit physical activity and seek prompt medical attention, said officials.

Environmental regulation and enforcement officers are on site assessing the situation and collecting information.

“Metro Vancouver is responsible for issuing air emissions permits within the region, and assessing whether our requirements and bylaws are being met,” Metro Vancouver said in the bulletin.

"Parkland Refining holds a valid air quality permit with Metro Vancouver, and officers are assessing compliance with that permit, which will be an ongoing process.”

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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