Premier John Horgan and Public safety Minister Mike Farnworth announce new emergency measures for COVID-19 pandemic, B.C. legislature, March 26, 2020. (B.C. government)

Travellers returning to B.C. must have self-isolation plan or face quarantine: Horgan

Premier John Horgan says forms must be filled out by travellers

B.C. and federal officials will be checking people’s written self-isolation plans when they enter B.C. at a U.S. land border crossing or at Vancouver International Airport, and if they’re not approved they will go into quarantine for 14 days, Premier John Horgan says.

Horgan announced Wednesday (April 8) that self-isolation forms will be distributed on aircraft and at the borders, as “snowbirds” and international repatriation flights come in. If the plan isn’t acceptable, they will be sent to a designated quarantine facility for 14 days under the powers of the federal Quarantine Act, he said.

Horgan said international flights will no longer be arriving at Victoria and Kelowna airports as of April 9, only Vancouver, which will help intercept people who haven’t been subject to COVID-19 restrictions and may carry on with routine chores as soon as they get into B.C.

Horgan said B.C. had assumed that Ottawa designating four major airports including Vancouver’s meant that U.S. and other international flights would not be coming into other B.C. airports. That has not been the case up to and including an April 8 flight from Seattle to Victoria.

Horgan stressed that he isn’t criticizing Ottawa’s effort, as it attempts to build COVID-19 protection procedures on the fly.

“They’re in the same book, but they’re a page or two behind us,” Horgan said, adding that he expects the federal government to impose similar solutions at Toronto and Montreal airports.

MARCH 16: B.C. blasts Trudeau decision to keep U.S. border open

MARCH 17: CEO says YVR ready to screen international arrivals

Horgan and Health Minister Adrian Dix have repeatedly called on Ottawa to do a better job notifying and checking international arrivals to B.C. of the need to self-isolate due to COVID-19, after travellers began reporting little or no screening or information on arrival. Horgan first commented publicly on March 13, after a conference call with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and premiers in the early days of Canada’s pandemic response.

Airports and land border crossings are “where we want the federal government to up their game,” Horgan said then, after reports that airport staff were not advising arriving passengers to self-isolate for 14 days.

Dix said April 6 that B.C. was making progress working with the federal government on better screening. He cited April 3 traffic at Vancouver International Airport as an example.

“I think there are nine or so flights from Seattle, from San Francisco, from Los Angeles, including flights that go to Kelowna and Victoria,” Dix said. “Everyone has to self-isolate for 14 days. That’s the rule under the Quarantine Act. The letter of the law has to be felt in practice.”


@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

Bish Creek fire removed from Province’s Wildfire Dashboard

Unclear when investigation into fire’s cause will be completed

District looking for public input on cycling plan

Survey is open to the public until May 25

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Flooding unlikely this year throughout Skeena watershed

Region’s snowpack among lowest in the province

Cameras and convoys: Graduation in the age of COVID-19

Schools in Terrace and Kitimat are thinking outside the box to give students a graduation ceremony

B.C. records no new COVID-19 deaths for the first time in weeks

Good news comes despite 11 new test-positive cases in B.C. in the past 24 hours

BC Corrections to expand list of eligible offenders for early release during pandemic

Non-violent offenders are being considered for early release through risk assessment process

Fraser Valley driver featured on ‘Highway Thru Hell’ TV show dies

Monkhouse died Sunday night of a heartattack, Jamie Davis towing confirmed

B.C. visitor centres get help with COVID-19 prevention measures

Destination B.C. gearing up for local, in-province tourism

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

36 soldiers test positive for COVID-19 after working in Ontario, Quebec care homes

Nearly 1,700 military members are working in long-term care homes overwhelmed by COVID-19

B.C. poison control sees spike in adults, children accidentally ingesting hand sanitizer

Hand sanitizer sales and usage have gone up sharply amid COVID-19 pandemic

Most Read