British Columbia

2nd Site C worker tests positive for COVID-19, BC Hydro says

A worker at the Site C work camp in northeastern B.C. has tested positive for COVID-19, the second case detected to date on the site, according to BC Hydro.

Company says worker wore mask and followed physical distancing so risk of spread is low

An aerial view of construction at the Site C hydroelectric project in northeastern B.C. near Fort St. John. (BC Hydro/Contributed )

A worker at the Site C work camp in northeastern B.C. has tested positive for COVID-19, the second case detected to date on the site, according to BC Hydro.

The employee worked at the hydroelectric dam construction site during the week of Sept. 7 and stayed in the work camp, the utility company said in a release Wednesday. 

When returning home from the site this past weekend, the worker learned that, before travelling there, they had been exposed to someone who later tested positive for COVID-19. 

The worker developed symptoms and was tested on Sept. 15. The company said the worker is currently isolated and recovering at home in the Lower Mainland.

BC Hydro said the worker wore a mask and followed physical distancing while at the site and in the lodge.

"Given the precautions taken by the worker while at site, there was a low risk of transmission," the company wrote.

The worker did not the leave the camp or interact with anyone in the local community, including Fort St. John, B.C., the city closest to the camp.

Calls to shut down

Another Site C worker tested positive in July, forcing several others to isolate. 

BC Hydro, which owns the $10-billion project, has faced calls to shut down the site. The camp houses nearly 1,000 workers building a third hydroelectric dam on the Peace River, including hundreds flown in from other provinces.

The B.C. government has said the ongoing construction of the dam is an essential service.

BC Hydro previously said it has implemented several safety measures at the site, including scaling back on construction, restricting non-essential travel for workers and consultants, and postponing non-essential site tours.

The company said Wednesday it continues to work with Northern Health Authority and is strictly following all provincial and federal health guidelines.

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