Manitoba

'Rest assured': Mayor urges calm as Winnipeg sees 1st presumptive coronavirus case

Winnipeggers shouldn't push any panic buttons just because the first presumptive case of coronavirus has been detected in the city, officials say.

'This is a changing and evolving situation and the city is prepared,' says head of Emergency Operations Centre

Mayor Brian Bowman says all necessary steps are being taken to protect the health and safety of Winnipeggers. (Gary Solilak/CBC)

Winnipeggers shouldn't push any panic buttons just because the first presumptive case of coronavirus has been detected in the city, officials say.

"While news of the first presumptive positive case of COVID-19 in the city of Winnipeg may be unsettling, citizens should rest assured that all necessary steps are being taken to protect [their] health and … safety," Mayor Brian Bowman said Thursday.

Jason Shaw, manager of the city's Emergency Operations Centre, said the risk remains low for Winnipeggers.

"This is a changing and evolving situation and the city is prepared. I'm confident that we can continue planning and adjust as this changes," he said.

The operations centre was activated last week to begin monitoring and preparing for the virus, but that's routine "to gain situational awareness and keep an eye on what may happen throughout Canada and in our province," Shaw said

The centre is working with its counterparts from the province and "actively monitoring the situation," he said.

"We just need to remind people that the best advice right now is to wash your hands and stay home if you're sick, and we will keep you updated as much as possible."

Bowman reiterated those comments.

"We need all Winnipeggers to do their part. We all have a role to play," the mayor said.

now