Interior Health has a role in Major Events held in the southern interior whose nature, expected attendee level, duration, or location challenges the normal response capability of a community. The purpose of our involvement is to mitigate impact to public health and safety related to services we provide.
If you are planning a major event contact the Health Protection department early in the planning process to ensure that approvals are in place and that all public health concerns have been addressed.
Find an Environmental Health Officer.
Public safety is responsibility of the event organizer.
Food vendors need to submit an application and receive appropriate approval. Go to the Interior Health Food Safety page for more information
Sanitation (hand basins)
The type of sanitary facilities depends on the length and nature of the event. Hand basins and/or sanitizing stations are required at each food service and portable privy.
Apply for Water approval a minimum of 3 months prior to the event.
Contact an Environmental Health Officer to seek Water Approval and ask if an operating permit is needed. Visit our Drinking Water page for more information.
Solid Waste Disposal (garbage)
The appropriate number of garbage containers required for an event depends on the size of the event and the amount of estimated waste being generated. Locate containers in obvious areas such as food service, washrooms and beverage gardens.
Garbage containers must be emptied frequently to maintain a sanitary and safe environment. Garbage needs to be regularly removed from the site to reduce the potential for odour complaints and insect and rodent problems.
Check with the local government for bylaws governing the handling of solid waste garbage. They may specify practices for recycling and composting.
Sewage Disposal – Grey and Black Water
Note - The use of pit privies (outhouses) is not allowed.
To determine the number of portable privies see the BC Building Code Section 3.7.2 Health Requirements, Plumbing Facilities and Table 126.96.36.199.a Water Closets for an Assembly Occupancy.
Portable privies must be serviced and a copy of the pump-out contract provided to the Environmental Health Officer in advance of the event.
Wastewater Tanks (for food vendors)
Small waste water tanks servicing portable or temporary food units are governed by the Guideline for Mobile Food Vending Carts or HP-FS-9002 Temporary Food Services Guideline.
The organizer must have a plan in place for emptying tanks, especially during multi-day events.
In-ground Sewage Disposal (for permanent event sites)
Permanent, in-ground sewerage disposal systems can be installed for large, annual events. An “Authorized Person”, pursuant to the Sewerage System Regulation must file a Record of Sewerage Disposal System. For discharges exceeding 22,700L the event organizer should contact the Ministry of Environment.
Swimming Pools and Hot Tubs
Portable or fixed in place hot tubs or swimming pools intended for public use require prior approval from the Environmental Health Officer and Public Health Engineer.
Tattooing, Piercing & Tanning
Information can be found in the Guidelines for Personal Service Establishments. Operators need to obtain approval by completing an Information for Health Approval form prior to the event. For more information visit our Tattooing, Piercing, Tanning, and Hair page.