Ottawa – Before you celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, and especially if you’re heading downtown, please review these tips to help keep your Canada Day weekend healthy and safe.


From June 30 to July 2, visitors to Parliament Hill will have to undergo a security screening and a bag check at either of the two tents set up for these purposes. For more information about security and restricted items on Parliament Hill, consult the Parliamentary Protective Service website.

Party safe

Whether you’re going out for a drink or plan to party all night long, know these party safe tips at and don’t forget to #MakeItUnforgettable

Plan a safe ride home. Plan how you’ll get home before the party especially if you don’t have a designated driver; plan your free OC Transpo bus route or cab ride in advance. Impaired walking or cycling is not a safe way to get home. Find tips from the Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines on how to reduce your risk.

General safety

  • Check the weather forecast and prepare accordingly – including planning ahead where you will seek shelter in adverse weather.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of heat illness and take action immediately.
  • Drink plenty of water and keep hydrated when active or outdoors.
  • Be mindful of food safety before and after handling food.
  • Be Sun Smart – wear sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses and light and loose clothing.
  • Do not bring glass containers downtown as they may accidently break and cause serious injuries to you or someone else.
  • Wear properly fitted and comfortable footwear.
  • If you take medication, bring it with you and include a current list of prescribed medications.
  • Keep a close eye on children and teach them to stay where they are if they get separated from you.
  • Know where the nearest lost-child tent is located.

Water Safety

If you are celebrating Canada Day around water, remember to:

  • Always keep children within arm’s reach, in and around water.
  • Ensure that children and weaker swimmers wear lifejackets or personal flotation devices (PFD) in and around water.
  • Supervise and swim with children only when free of alcohol, drugs and distractions. Know what to do in an emergency, including CPR and calling 9-1-1


  • Purchase fireworks from a reputable retailer and follow the label directions.
  • Fireworks must be discharged on private property, and by someone 18 years or older.
  • Fireworks must not cause danger to or nuisance any person and other property.
  • If you are heading downtown to see the fireworks, keep within designated areas only. Fences protect you from danger; do not climb over them to get a better view of the fireworks.
  • Fireworks often frighten pets. Leave them in the safety and comfort of home.

More regulations and requirements are listed on the Fireworks By-law on

As a reminder Ottawa is smoke-free. There is no safe level of secondhand smoke, even outdoors. Smoking, including the use of water pipes, is prohibited in many public areas. This includes:

  • All City property, including parks, playgrounds, beaches, and sports fields.
  • All bar and restaurant patios.
  • All school and hospital properties.

For more information and tips, visit the Ottawa Public Health blog, or call 3-1-1.