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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Google Maps screenshot taken at 8:08 a.m
TRAFFIC: Westbound Lougheed Highway lanes closed from rollover crash

One eastbound lane open, emergency crews on scene

fddf
COVID exposure at Hatzic Elementary causes staff to self-isolate, remote classes for next week

April 29, 30 exposures make school act ‘out of an abundance of caution’ superintendent tweets

Ripy Jubbal of Abbotsford has received a 30-month jail sentence for the fraudulent use of credit cards and credit card data. (Facebook photo)
Abbotsford woman sentenced for $80K in fraudulent credit card purchases

Ripy Jubbal and spouse used identities of 19 different victims, court hears

A woman in the Harrison Mills area was attacked by a cougar on Tuesday, May 4. (File photo)
UPDATE: 2 cougars killed following attack in Harrison Mills

Attack victim remains in hospital in stable condition

....
Abbotsford graphic designer pitches Flyers rebrand for AHL team

Alex Svarez suggests new affiliate team turns back the clock and brings back Flyers moniker

Jose Marchand prepares Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination doses at a mobile clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, in Montreal, Friday, April 30, 2021. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization is coming under fire after contradicting the advice Canadians have been receiving for weeks to take the first vaccine against COVID-19 that they’re offered. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Trudeau says he is glad he got AstraZeneca, vaccines are only way out of pandemic

‘The most important thing is to get vaccinated with the first vaccine offered to you’

Flow Academy is located at 1511 Sutherland Avenue in Kelowna. (Michael Rodriguez/Capital News)
Interior Health locks out Kelowna martial arts gym following COVID violations

Actions were taken after all other steps to gain compliance were exhausted, says health authority

FILE – A plexiglass barrier is pictured creating a barrier to protect a cashier at a grocery store in North Vancouver, B.C. Sunday, March 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Grocery store workers now eligible for COVID vaccines in Fraser Health, Vancouver Coastal

Workers will be fast-tracked through the system, which is otherwise booking for people in their 50s

A man who allegedly spat at and yelled racial slurs at an Asian family was arrested for hate-motivated assault Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
Arrest made after man spits, yells anti-Asian racial slurs at Victoria mom and kids

The man was arrested for hate-motivated assault near Quadra Elementary School Tuesday

A lady wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada may find it challenging to reach herd immunity from COVID-19, experts say

Level of immunity among the population changes with the variants, especially the more transmissible strains

B.C.’s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Dip in COVID-19 cases with 572 newly announced in B.C.

No new deaths have been reported but hospitalized patients are up to 481, with 161 being treated in intensive care

Solar panels on a parking garage at the University of B.C. will be used to separate water into oxygen and hydrogen, the latter captured to supply a vehicle filling station. (UBC video)
UBC parkade project to use solar energy for hydrogen vehicles

Demonstration project gets $5.6M in low-carbon fuel credits

FILE – A student arrives at school as teachers dressed in red participate in a solidarity march to raise awareness about cases of COVID-19 at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. ‘should be able to’ offer 1st dose of COVID vaccine to kids 12+ by end of June: Henry

Health Canada authorized the vaccine for younger teens this morning

Most Read