Northern Health declares COVID-19 outbreak among Coastal GasLink pipeline workers

Journal of Commerce | The Canadian Press | December 21, 2020

BURNS LAKE, B.C. — Northern Health has issued an order limiting work at two sites related to the Coastal GasLink pipeline project while declaring an outbreak of COVID-19.

In a statement posted online Sunday (Dec. 20), the health authority says 17 cases remain active at two lodges where workers have been staying.

It says the affected worksites along the 670-kilometre pipeline route are limited to all but essential workers until an updated safety plan is approved.

The declaration will last 28 days and comes after Northern Health found evidence of transmission among employees of the Pacific Atlantic Pipeline Construction company, one of Coastal GasLink’s prime contractors.

Northern Health says the accommodations in question are 7 Mile Lodge in the Burns Lake area and Little Rock Lake Lodge in the Nechako area.

It says 17 of 27 confirmed COVID-19 cases remain active and the workers, along with their close contacts, have been told to self-isolate.

“Essential staff will also support anyone who is, or needs to be, self-isolating at either workforce accommodation site,” Northern Health says.

Elsewhere, Fraser Health has declared a COVID-19 outbreak at The Mayfair, a long-term care home in Abbotsford, where four residents tested positive.

B.C. health officials are set to present new case numbers today (Dec. 21).

There were 9,978 active cases of COVID-19 as of the province’s last update.