British Columbia

B.C. records 81 new cases of COVID-19 from over the weekend and 2 more deaths

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says 81 new cases of COVID-19 and two new deaths have been recorded in British Columbia since Friday. Henry called last week's surge in new cases a turning point.

New outbreak at Fraser Valley Packing near Abbotsford, as 15 people at blueberry packing plant test positive

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides the COVID-19 update from Victoria. (CBC/Mike McArthur)


  • B.C. has recorded 81 new cases and 2 new deaths since Friday.
  • The total number of COVID-19 cases has reached 3,500.
  • The number of deaths has reached 193.
  • There are 264 active cases of COVID-19 in B.C.
  • 11 people are being treated in hospitals, including three in ICU.

B.C. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says 81 new cases of COVID-19 and two more deaths have been recorded in British Columbia since Friday.

The total number of COVID-19 cases in B.C. has reached 3,500 since the pandemic began.

Health authorities also announced that a new community outbreak has been declared at Fraser Valley Packing, a blueberry packing plant in the Abbotsford area. Henry says an investigation of the outbreak began Thursday and 15 people have tested positive for the virus so far.

Cases have been steadily ticking upwards since the province entered Phase 3 of its gradual reopening in late June. It's something health officials warned could happen as people expanded their social interactions.

However, the 81 new cases over the three-day reporting period since Friday mark a slight decrease from the average of 30 cases a day the province was seeing last week.

Henry, who described last week in B.C. as a "turning point," has asked the public to pull back on social interactions, and "recommit" to physical distancing.

As of Monday, the outbreak on Haida Gwaii now includes 14 cases, which health officials say are all linked to local residents and off-island travel.

Health officials also said an outbreak in Kelowna continues to grow and anyone who may have been exposed needs to monitor themselves closely.

More than 1,000 British Columbians are currently in self-isolation, with up to 86 cases now linked to public gatherings and parties in the Kelowna area.

"If you have been told to self-isolate this is not optional, this is a requirement. This is what you need to do now for the duration of the incubation period from when you were exposed," Henry reminded British Columbians on Monday.

Health Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry walk through the basement of the legislature in Victoria B.C. on their way to a COVID-19 briefing on July 16, 2020. (Mike McArthur/CBC)

New order limits guests at vacation rentals

Monday, Henry also amended the order on mass gatherings, specifically to limit the number of guests at short-term rentals, houseboats, hotels, cabins and other vacation rentals to the capacity of the premise, plus a maximum of five visitors.

In addition, she said, owners must collect contact information for everyone, guests and visitors alike. Henry said the onus is on the property owner to monitor their location for compliance.

"That means you cannot have a large group of people over to party in your hotel room or on your boat during this period of our COVID summer," she said.

Figures from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) show the Okanagan has had 107 positive tests between July 10 and July 23.

During the same period, 58 people were diagnosed south of the Fraser River, 49 in Vancouver and four in Richmond.

Meantime, an online list from the BCCDC listing possible coronavirus exposures stemming from flights involving Vancouver has grown to 13 since June 3.


With files from Michelle Ghoussoub and Canadian Press