Tough COVID-19 Orders Extended to Northern B.C.

Kathy Brookes/CTV
11/19/2020

New stronger COVID-19 restrictions have now been extended across the province, including to the Northern Health region. The announcement came this afternoon from Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. 

In response to surging case numbers, the province is calling on people to curtail all non-essential travel and it's telling everyone to reduce their social interactions to just those in your household bubble. 

As well, Dr. Henry is making mask wearing mandatory in all indoor public spaces, with the exception of children under 2 and those people who cannot wear a mask. The rule applies to common areas in workplaces and in restaurants when you aren't eating. 

High intensity group fitness is shut down, including interval training, hot yoga and spin classes.  

Municipalities were among those responding immediately, with the District of Kitimat posting a notice suspending spin classes and squash. 

B.C.'s top doctor is also prohibiting in-person faith gatherings, with exceptions for funerals, weddings and baptisms with fewer than 10 people and no receptions.

There's also a ban on spectators at indoor and outdoor sports events.

Businesses like restaurants and hair salons where transmission has been low can remain open. 

The orders will be revisited on December 7th.

Today's new restrictions come after 528 new cases were reported on Thursday, pushing B.C.'s active case count close to 7,000 -- a new record. 

There were 11 new cases in Northern B.C. reported on Thursday. 

Across the province, there are a record 217 people in hospital, 59 of them in critical or intensive care. 

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