B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks about economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic at the B.C. legislature, June 17, 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks about economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic at the B.C. legislature, June 17, 2020. (B.C. government)

COVID-19: B.C. ready for in-province travel, John Horgan says

Film industry, theatres, resorts and hotels begin opening

B.C.’s low COVID-19 infection rates are leading Canada and residents are prepared for in-province travel and the opening of resorts and hotels, Premier John Horgan says.

Horgan and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced June 24 what has been signalled for more than a week, that “phase three” is ready. It includes a restart of film and TV industry work and movie theatres.

Horgan said the reopening of sit-in restaurants and the booking of 100,000 provincial campsites has shown that the B.C. residents are ready for more activities and travel. Other signs of public confidence include an increase in public transit use.

“TransLink weekly ridership last week was more than double what it was at the COVID-19 low point of April 5, and ridership on B.C. Ferries is increasing as well,” Horgan said.

Horgan and Henry warned that physical distance measures remain critical to controlling the spread of virus infection, and events such as big family reunions remain too dangerous.

“This is not the time for big parties or family gatherings, particularly,” Henry said.

RELATED: COVID-19 infection rate on track for more reopening

RELATED: Asylum seekers continue to cross Canada-U.S. border

The B.C. cabinet also extended its state of emergency to July 7, and has presented legislation allowing the cabinet to extend emergency measures for up to a year.

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson said the decision to reopen travel is based on public health evaluation, but the shift to phase three is “not very well defined” by Horgan.

“If the public health officials think it’s time to move on to a new phase, then that would seem to be appropriate, because we all need to be concerned about getting B.C. back to life, back to business, back on the job so that people have something to look forward to now that the virus seems to be under control in B.C.” Wilkinson said.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Interior Health has declared the Cariboo Chilcotin a community cluster. (Angie Mindus photo)
Interior Health declares Cariboo Chilcotin region a COVID-19 cluster, 215 cases since Jan. 1

Most cases are related to transmission at social events and gatherings in Williams Lake

Sonja Maas, who lives in Germany, was inspired to draw the 2021 Gold Rush Sled Dog Mail Run art after spending time in Quesnel working with a musher in 2020. (Submitted Photo)
Sled dog mail run artist inspired by 2020 event

Sonja Maas lives in Germany, and spent the 2020 sled dog run in Quesnel with a musher

Chief Leah Stump communicated the state of emergency news through a Facebook video. (Video Screenshot)
Nazko First Nation tightens borders due to COVID-19

Chief Leah Stump said in a video they will be putting up checkpoints before entering the reserve

Tl’etinqox will be going into lockdown at 6 p.m. Jan 20 due to COVID-19. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
House parties, impending lockdown and loss; Tl’etinqox chief grapples with COVID-19 challenges

Tl’etinqox Government west of Williams Lake declared a state of emergency Jan. 18

A vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is displayed on Jan. 5, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Rick Bowmer/AP)
Power outage spoils COVID-19 vaccine at Tl’etinqox

Temperature-sensitive vaccine no longer viable after Jan. 18 event

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, vice-president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada, speaks at a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
B.C. records 500 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, 14 deaths

Outbreak at Surrey Pretrial jail, two more in health care

Vancouver Canucks’ Travis Hamonic grabs Montreal Canadiens’ Josh Anderson by the face during first period NHL action in Vancouver, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horvat scores winner as Canucks dump Habs 6-5 in shootout thriller

Vancouver and Montreal clash again Thursday night

A woman writes a message on a memorial mural wall by street artist James “Smokey Devil” Hardy during a memorial to remember victims of illicit drug overdose deaths on International Overdose Awareness Day, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Monday, August 31, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. paramedics respond to record-breaking number of overdose calls in 2020

On the front lines, COVID-19 has not only led to more calls, but increased the complexity

Eighteen-year-old Aidan Webber died in a marine accident in 2019. He was a Canadian Junior BMX champion from Nanaimo. (Submitted)
Inadequate safety training a factor in teen BMX star’s workplace death in 2019

Aidan Webber was crushed by a barge at a fish farm near Port Hardy

Southern resident killer whales in B.C. waters. Research shows the population’s females are more negatively influenced by vessel traffic than males. (Photo supplied by Ocean Wise Conservation Association)
Female orcas less likely to feed in presence of vessel traffic: study

Research the southern resident population raises concerns over reproduction capacity

(Black Press Media files)
Transport Canada not budging on enclosed deck rules, despite calls from BC Ferries union

There have been at least 23 cases of the U.K. variant detected in Canada, four of which are in B.C.

The Elk Valley Hospital is adapting to meet the needs of patients in the Elk Valley.
1-in-5 COVID tests coming back positive in and around Fernie, sparking concern

Dr Ron Clark of Elk Valley Hospital said one in five tests was returning positive for COVID-19

Throughout December, RCMP conducted CounterAttack road checks as police worked to keep roads free of impaired drivers. (BLACK PRESS file photo)
‘You can’t make this stuff up’: Stories from the B.C. CounterAttack campaign

Amusing, yes, but a reminder impaired driving affects ability to drive and to make good decisions

(Thesendboys/Instagram)
Video of man doing backflip off Vancouver bridge draws police condemnation

Group says in Instagram story that they ‘don’t do it for the clout’

Most Read