New shipping containers will no longer be permitted on residential properties in the city of Quesnel.

Council was split on the issue as the vote was just 4-3 in favour.

An original motion to allow one per property as long as they met criteria that included size and ventilation was identically defeated.

Councillor Scott Elliott was one of the most vocal against allowing them…

“The amount of engineering that has to go in and staff time and money that is going to have to be spent now to make sure that these are safe. I still contend that this should not come down to Council making safety issues and putting people possibly in danger.”

Councillor Shushil Thapar on the other hand, while agreeing that they need to be ventilated for safety, felt differently…

“As a Council member we serve at the will of the public and I talk to a lot of people and not just the full gallery here but outside as well.”

Councillors John Brisco and Ron Paull were also opposed to banning them.

The Fire Chief and City Manager Byron Johnson and staff were all opposed to allowing them as well.

Johnson also raised the possibility of liability should the City allow a shipping container that wasn’t safe and if something were to happen to a firefighter.

As for what to do with the shipping containers that are already in place, recommendations will come back to Council at a later date although the general consensus appeared to be to grandfather them as long as they comply with ventilation requirements.