COVID-19 testing ramps up at Big White after unsanctioned Australia Day gatherings | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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COVID-19 testing ramps up at Big White after unsanctioned Australia Day gatherings

The village at Big White Resort is pictured in this file photo.
February 03, 2021 - 1:49 PM

Five more cases of COVID-19 have been linked to the community cluster at Big White Mountain raising the total number of cases to 231 since Dec. 15, when the cluster was declared.

In a press release, Interior Health said that of the 231 known COVID-19 cases linked to this cluster, 145 have lived and/or worked on Big White Mountain. There are currently 16 cases active and in isolation.

Acknowledging the new cases, Big White sent out a release indicated that they could be linked to the fact Interior Health tested twice last week in response to unsanctioned Australia Day gatherings. Positive cases, they said, continue to stem from privately managed group housing.

"The numbers are consistently at a point now where they're somewhat manageable. Any positive cases at the resort is one positive case too many, but we are able to move those that require quarantine into safe, isolated housing immediately thanks to the work done by Interior Health, the Regional District and the Big White COVID-19 taskforce," Michael J. Ballingall, Senior Vice President at Big White Ski Resort Ltd. said in a press release.

"We are anxious to hear the latest from Dr. Bonnie Henry on February 5, and once we have a better idea of what travel and tourism is going to look like over the next few months, we'll be able to adjust our COVID-19 protocols as necessary to accommodate provincial travellers. Until then, it’s locals-only, and a reminder to stay in your household bubble, especially this weekend for Superbowl Sunday. Fewer faces, larger spaces should be your motto."

Interior Health will continue weekly outreach testing on Wednesdays at the Happy Valley Day Lodge until April 7. To book a test online, click here. Our next update is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 5.

Big White Ski Resort is scheduled to remain open, snow permitting, until April 11.

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