Latest modelling by public health shows cases generated by COVID-19 infections into places where it can spread quickly. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)

Latest modelling by public health shows cases generated by COVID-19 infections into places where it can spread quickly. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)

Industrial sites, pubs, restaurants driving COVID-19 spread in B.C.

Infection risk higher in offices, retail, warehouses, farms

Restaurants and bars in urban B.C. are a major source of new infections as B.C. deals with near-record spread of COVID-19, according to new data released Thursday by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.

Industrial sites in the Fraser Health region have also been key points of transmission, as well as indoor fitness and gyms, which are subject to the latest restrictions along with indoor dining and drinking.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry is expected to extend those restrictions into May as the province targets available vaccine to workplace clusters and seeks to close individual businesses rather than whole sectors. Immunization is being used in food processing and retail that can’t be shut down, along with front-line health care where new infections are now relatively low due to vaccination.

Henry and B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix presented data from the two urban health regions with the majority of new cases. Fraser Health, with industrial and food processing as well as food service and retail, has had the most infections. Restaurants and bars are the largest source in Vancouver Coastal, reflecting less industrial and processing activity as well as a large outbreak that resulted in the closure of the Whistler-Blackcomb ski resort.

“We’ve seen ongoing high rates of transmission in Surrey,” as well as Windermere and Revelstoke in the Kootenays and the Dawson Creek area in northeastern B.C., Henry said.

Henry said the “dramatic increase” in infections in recent weeks has been mostly in people aged 19 to 39, through work as well as social gatherings, with an increase in the 40-to-59 age group as well. The pattern has shifted as more easily spread coronavirus variants have entered B.C.

“Before, if there were 10 people in a household, we might see transmission to two or three other people at most,” Henry said. “Now we’re seeing with the new variants in particular, that transmission can be widespread in households. It may be that all of the household becomes infected, and it’s the 40- or 50-year-old parent who ends up in hospital.”

RELATED: B.C.’s COVID-19 case count running higher, 1,205 Thursday

RELATED: COVID-19 transmission remains low in B.C. schools


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Just Posted

Tammy Bradford, manager of the Creston Museum & Archives for the last 23 years, wants to welcome visitors to check out their exhibits and programs this summer. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston Museum encourages summer visitors to check out programs and activities

After some temporary closures of indoor exhibits due to COVID-19, the museum has re-opened to welcome visitors

Nasukin Jason Louie of the Lower Kootenay Band poses under the mural in the administration building. The mural depicts past elders David Luke, Wilfred Jacobs, Isobel Louie, Charlotte Basil, and Louis White. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Lower Kootenay Band announces cross-border COVID-19 vaccine clinic

In partnership with the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho, the clinic will be held on National Indigenous Peoples Day

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League met for their AGM and announced a number of new initiatives, new awards and changes in their executive committee, as well as the starting date for the 2021-22 season. Paul Rodgers file.
KIJHL announces start dates for 2021-22 season

Season set to begin Oct. 1 with league still following all health guidelines

South Slocan’s Ti Loran is among the recipients of this year’s Neil Muth Memorial Scholarship. Photo: Submitted
Neil Muth Memorial Scholarships awarded to 4 students

Students in Creston, South Slocan and Revelstoke are sharing the honour

The Independent Investigations Office of BC is looking into a Castlegar incident. File photo
Police watchdog investigating Castlegar incident

IIO: Woman sustained a reportedly self-inflicted injury

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

B.C. ambulance station in Revelstoke is expected to get a new system called the Scheduled On-Call (SOC) this fall. (Liam Harrap - Revelstoke Review)
B.C. ambulance changes could put Revelstoke residents at risk, warn local paramedics

Paramedics said to expect a substantial increase in ambulance response time starting this fall

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

Most Read