Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world Saturday

Roughly 5,000 workers at an Amazon warehouse near Toronto are staying home for at least two weeks because of an ongoing outbreak of COVID-19 at the facility.

Toronto-area Amazon warehouse ordered temporarily closed amid ongoing outbreak

Amazon site in Ontario must close and all employees must self-isolate, health officials order

2 years ago
Duration 3:28
An Amazon Canada facility in Brampton, Ont., has been shut down and all employees ordered to self-isolate for two weeks amid an ongoing outbreak of COVID-19. There have been more than 600 cases associated with the site in total, with 240 identified in recent weeks, Dr. Lawrence Loh told CBC News.

The latest:

Roughly 5,000 workers at an Amazon warehouse near Toronto are staying home for at least two weeks because of an ongoing outbreak of COVID-19 at the facility.

Health officials ordered the warehouse in Brampton close, effective 12:01 a.m. Saturday, after 240 of its workers tested positive for the virus that causes the respiratory illness.

Peel Public Health said it's possible that everyone working there was at high risk for exposure to the coronavirus. It said all workers must self-isolate until March 27, unless they have tested positive in the last 90 days and completed quarantine.

Amazon said in a statement it has taken measures to keep workers safe during the pandemic, including providing buses to transport them to the warehouse. All employees at the Heritage Road facility have been tested for COVID-19 twice in the past three weeks, the company said.

What's happening across Canada

As of 6 p.m. ET on Saturday, Canada had reported 906,206 cases of COVID-19, with 31,225 cases considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 22,434.

In British Columbia, an outbreak has been declared at a glass manufacturing company in Langley. Fraser Health says 44 employees of the facility have tested positive for the virus at Vitrum Glass.

Alberta reported 474 new COVID-19 cases and five new deaths on Saturday. 

Meanwhile, Alberta Health Services said they're nearing the maximum number of bookings it can handle for its current supply of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine. The province was initially given 58,500 doses of the vaccine. 

Saskatchewan confirmed 153 new cases cases and an additional death.

The province said it surpassed the 100,000 vaccination milestone on Saturday, and announced those aged 72 and older will be able to register for a vaccination appointment starting on Sunday.

Manitoba announced 94 new cases and four more deaths.

Ontario reported 1,468 new cases and 11 additional deaths.

Meanwhile, some family doctors in Toronto, Peel Region, Hamilton, Guelph, Peterborough, and Simcoe-Muskoka are now administering the AstraZeneca-Oxford shot.

Quebec registered 789 new cases and 11 more deaths.

The province has announced gyms and spas can reopen starting March 26, and that more than 350 pharmacies in Montreal have joined Quebec's vaccination effort.

People wear face masks as they cross a street in Montreal on Saturday. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)

In Prince Edward Island, circuit-breaker measures were lifted. The measures were were imposed in late February after a spike in COVID-19 cases among young people in Summerside and Charlottetown.

Nova Scotia confirmed five new cases.

Newfoundland and Labrador saw no new cases for the second time this week as the province further eases public health restrictions.

New Brunswick also saw no new cases. Meanwhile, residents 85 and older are now able to make vaccine appointments.

Nunavut added two new cases in the hamlet of Arviat. All eight of the territory's active cases are in the hard-hit community.

Yukon is warning of a COVID-19 exposure at Coeur Mining's Silvertip mine, just south of its border with British Columbia. The territorial government says health officials have been informed of transmission at the mine, which draws workers from areas including Lower Post, B.C., Whitehorse and Watson Lake, Yukon.

What's happening around the world

As of Saturday, more than 119.2 million people around the world had been reported to having COVID-19, according to a tracking tool maintained by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University. Of those, more than 67.5 million were listed as recovered. The global death toll stood at more than 2.6 million.

In Asia, Jordan has become the first country in the Middle East to receive vaccines through the global COVAX initiative, with a plane carrying 144,000 AstraZeneca-Oxford shots landing in Amman's airport late Friday.

In the Americas, U.S. health officials are warning health professionals about the risk of false positive results with a widely used cobas test for coronavirus and seasonal flu designed by Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche.

In Europe, Hungary reported a record-breaking day of new 9,444 new cases on Saturday — more than 1,000 more than the previous record set on Friday — and the number of patients being treated in the country's hospitals also reached a new high of 8,897.

In Africa, the South African government's agreement with Johnson & Johnson for 11 million COVID-19 vaccine doses includes an option for an additional 20 million doses depending on the availability of stock, the country's health minister said.

With files from The Canadian Press, The Associated Press and Reuters

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