Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and vacation bookings are being increased in B.C. (B.C. government)

Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and vacation bookings are being increased in B.C. (B.C. government)

Road blocks to enforce B.C. COVID restrictions on recreational travel out of health authority

B.C. extends COVID-19 indoor dining, group fitness ban until May 25

B.C. public health officials are extending the current COVID-19 restrictions for another five weeks, and imposing new travel restrictions – backed by road checks – to keep people in their home health regions.

Premier John Horgan said Monday that as of Friday, police will conduct roadside “audits” to make sure British Columbians are not travelling outside their local health region. Signs will also be placed at Alberta border crossings to notify people that B.C. expects essential travel only.

Campground and other tourism accommodation operators have agreed to refuse bookings from out-of-region customers until after the May long weekend, and B.C. Ferries will refuse reservations for recreational vehicles and cancel extra sailings for the Victoria Day weekend, which is traditionally seen as the start of camping season.

“We require serious measures if we’re going to get to the May long weekend and salvage our summer,” Horgan said.

The road checks will be similar to Christmas counter-attack checks for impaired driving, but “there will be no additional authority given to police,” Horgan said. “If we can’t do it without an order, we’re prepared to bring an order in.”

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced extension of dining and fitness restrictions Monday, after telling restaurant and bar owners last week to expect it. She took note of a scattering of weekend parties as warm weather has returned, and warned that people should not be planning vacations or other non-essential trips until after the May 24 long weekend.

With new COVID-19 cases running near 1,000 a day recently and the number of people in hospital with coronavirus-related conditions creeping up, workplace restrictions are becoming more important and there have been violations.

“We’ve seen that on patios for example, and the numbers of people who are in gyms,” Henry said.

RELATED: B.C. to offer vaccine to 40+ people in ‘high-risk communities’

RELATED: B.C. moves to guarantee no loss of pay for getting vaccinated


@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

Spout Lake Road and the many potholes. (Barbara Hansen photo - submitted)
Lac La Hache experiences flooding, potholes

Barbara Hansen: Lac La Hache happenings

Taralynn Leclair with her kids Juliette, 4, and Jaxson, 6, juggles home, work and the family hobby farm. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Moms rule home, hearth and farm

Women hold down the farm while their husbands go off to work

FILE PHOTO
Second doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available, as AstraZeneca supply runs low: Interior Health

Province expecting large volumes of Pfizer BioNTech as age-based cohort immunization program ramps up

Cariboo North MLA Coralee Oakes shared this photo of the binders and binders of letters and paperwork she’s received on area roads in the past few years. (Submitted photo)
Cariboo MLAs call on province to fix region’s roads

Minister Rob Fleming said more resources were on the way to the region

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

RCMP are looking for information on an alleged shooting attempt near an elementary school in Smithers March 10. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News/Stock)
UPDATE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

Details about the police incident are still unknown

Pieces of nephrite jade are shown at a mine site in northwestern B.C. in July 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Tahltan Central Government MANDATORY CREDIT
Indigenous nation opposes jade mining in northwestern B.C.

B.C.’s Mines Act requires operators to prepare a plan to protect cultural heritage resources

The body of Brenda Ware, 35, was found along Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park on Thursday, May 6, 2021. (RCMP handout)
RCMP ask for tips after woman’s body found in Kootenay National Park

Brenda Ware was found along Highway 93 in the park, 54 kilometres north of the town of Radium

People pass the red hearts on the COVID-19 Memorial Wall mourning those who have died, opposite the Houses of Parliament on the Embankment in London, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. On May 3, the British government announced that only one person had died of COVID-19 in the previous 24 hours. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kirsty Wigglesworth
For a view of a COVID-19 future, Canadians should look across the pond

Britain, like Canada, is one of the only countries in the world to delay second doses for several months

Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his 100th point this season with Leon Draisaitl (29) against the Vancouver Canucks during second period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 8, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Edmonton superstar McDavid hits 100-point mark as Oilers edge Canucks 4-3

NHL scoring leader needs just 53 games to reach century mark

Nuns of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity, carry some of her relics during a vigil of prayer in preparation for the canonization of Mother Teresa in the St. John in Latheran Basilica at the Vatican, Friday, Sept. 2, 2016. In which city did she do much of her charitable work? (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
QUIZ: How much do you know about these motherhood issues?

In honour of Mother’s Day, take this 10-question quiz

Most Read