Many residents turned their firearms over to police while they complete their registration documents.

Many residents turned their firearms over to police while they complete their registration documents.

Maple Ridge Mounties collect 83 rifles and guns

Officers visited the homes of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows gun owners whose registrations had expired.

Ridge Meadows RCMP have been knocking on doors and chatting with Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows residents about their restricted and prohibited firearms and the registration that’s required for them.

In the last week of November, police visited the homes of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows gun owners whose registrations had expired.

“During the initiative [dubbed Safe City], a total of 83 firearms were turned over to police, with the vast majority of owners requesting the police safeguard their firearms while they complete the documents they require,” Supt. Dave Fleugel said in a release.

“It’s understandable that many people do not even realize their restricted and prohibited firearms are unregistered, particularly if they have inherited these firearms.

“We ran this pilot program to help gun owners with registering their prohibited and restricted firearms if they wish to keep them, or relinquish unwanted firearms to the police.”

It’s dangerous to have the guns around because they could be stolen during a burglary then used in a crime.

Police added later that the homes that were visited are the last-known addresses of people who had registered their restricted and prohibited firearms under the Restricted Weapons Registration System.

In 1998, the federal government required all firearms owners that were part of that system, to re-register their firearms under the Canadian Firearms Information System.

They also said only a small portion of the firearms were given up while the rest will be returned once there is proper registration.

People who have any unwanted firearms should call their local police non-emergency line to make arrangements for pickup, and not bring them into police departments.

In April 2012, the Conservative government brought in legislation ending the Long Gun Registry, which removed the requirement to register non-restricted firearms such as rifles and required the destruction of registration records.