(Black Press Media files)

Canadian ferry operators call for inclusion in COVID-19 travel restrictions

Domestic travel restrictions should include ferries, operators say

As new restrictions came into effect barring people with symptoms of COVID-19 from planes and trains, ferry operators called for the federal government to ban such travellers from their vessels as well.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the travel ban for domestic flights and intercity trains over the weekend as the federal government escalated its efforts to curb the spread of the deadly respiratory illness across Canada.

The prime minister sidestepped a question during his daily news conference on Monday about relying on staff at airports and train stations who don’t have medical training and in some cases protective equipment to screen passengers.

“The fundamental principle we’ve put forward is if you have symptoms of COVID-19, if you feel you might have symptoms of COVID-19, stay home,” Trudeau said.

“That is what we are asking of all Canadians and these measures we’ve brought in for airlines and railways is an additional measure, an additional encouragement and expectation that people who have symptoms of COVID-19 will not travel.”

The comments came as the Canadian Ferry Association, which represents operators across the country, said the travel restrictions for those displaying symptoms of COVID-19 need to be extended to those trying to board ferries. BC Ferries is a member of the organization.

“People with COVID-19 symptoms should also be banned from boarding ferries unless there are emergency requirements, such as going to a hospital, and only with prior notice to the ferry operator,” association CEO Serge Buy said in a statement.

“We urge the federal government to better consult with the ferry sector and provide the national leadership required to support critical continued ferry service to communities across the country.”

Buy said the pandemic has worsened already severe workforce shortages in the sector and that the infection of one crew member could disrupt the transport of passengers and goods to communities that rely on such service.

READ MORE: BC Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

READ MORE: WestJet extends international flight suspensions into May amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BCFerriesCoronavirus

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

Just Posted

‘Seven baths in two days’: Homeless adjusting to life in hotels

Victoria passes motion to allow camping 24-7 in parks until June 25

Langford Fire calm mother and daughter after being trapped in elevator

Three-year-old girl given stuffed animal to calm nerves

Capital Regional District prepares to reopen regional campgrounds

Camping will look different at Island View, Sooke Potholes, Jordan River sites

Victoria traffic stop yields drugs, case full of weapons

Police seize firearms, swords and flares

Colwood hosts pandemic recovery roundtable discussion

Attendees must RSVP for virtual meeting on May 29 from 1 to 3 p.m.

B.C. legislature coming back June 22 as COVID-19 emergency hits record

Pandemic restrictions now longer than 2017 wildfire emergency

POLL: Do you agree with the provincial government’s decision to increase the minimum wage?

B.C.’s lowest-paid workers will be getting a few more dollars to try… Continue reading

B.C.’s essential grocery, hardware store employees should get pandemic pay: retail group

Only B.C.’s social, health and corrections workers are eligible for top-ups

Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto vying to be NHL hubs, but there’s a catch

The NHL unveiled a return-to-play plan that would feature 24 teams

As SD84 schools look to reopen, Kyuquot and Zeballos opt out

Schools in Tahsis and Gold River will open on June 1, with 30 per cent students expected to come in

B.C. sees 9 new COVID-19 cases, one death as officials watch for new cases amid Phase Two

Number of confirmed active cases is at 244, with 37 people in hospital

Illicit-drug deaths up in B.C. and remain highest in Canada: chief coroner

More than 4,700 people have died of overdoses since B.C. declared a public health emergency in early 2016

CMHC sees declines in home prices, sales, starts that will linger to end of 2022

CMHC said average housing prices could fall anywhere from nine to 18 per cent in its forecast

B.C. Paralympian named to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame

Three-time world and Paralympic gold medalist Sonja Gaudet is part of 11-member class

Most Read