People wait to enter a Nike store on its first weekend open after a lengthy closure due to COVID-19, in Vancouver, on Sunday, May 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

People wait to enter a Nike store on its first weekend open after a lengthy closure due to COVID-19, in Vancouver, on Sunday, May 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. sees 2 deaths, 16 new COVID-19 cases over May long weekend on eve of phase two

Many retail stores have opened up, as have provincial parks

Two more people have died as a result of COVID-19 in B.C. over the May long weekend, even as daily new cases stayed low.

B.C. recorded 16 cases between Saturday and Monday, with eight cases per day. The total case count now stands at 2,444, with 335 currently active. There are 47 people in hospital, with 12 in ICU. The province has recorded a total of 143 deaths, including this weekend’s.

Speaking on Victoria Day (May 18), Dr. Bonnie Henry acknowledged the last two months have been difficult for British Columbians who have been isolation and physically distancing.

She said that as B.C. opens up this week, many people will feel both anxiety and anticipation.

“We need to continue to show that patience and compassion,” Henry said.

“With the easing of restrictions… the potential for a flare up does go up.”

She said public health officials will be watching carefully as locations and gyms open up in B.C. this week. Provincial parks opened on Thursday last week while dine-in restaurants can begin to open up on Tuesday with a number of rules as B.C. heads into phase two. Sit-down establishments will have to reduce to 50 per cent capacity, keep tables at six people or less and keep two metres between tables.

“We are sort of trying to figure this out… this seemed like a reasonable approach,” Henry said of the restaurant rules.

“We will be looking at it again as we move through this phase.”

Henry reiterated her stance on non-medical masks, saying that British Columbians could opt to wear them at times when physical distancing isn’t possible.

“Only you know your own risks.. and the precautions you need to take,” she said. Henry urged those with elderly or immunocompromised loved ones in their lives to take extra care when deciding to open up their circles in the coming weeks.

Henry said the onus is on each person to stay home when sick and not expose others.

“For this week, take it slow.”

READ MORE: B.C. restaurants can host dine-in guests Tuesday, but what will that look like?

READ MORE: Canadians’ worries shift from healthcare to social isolation as time goes on


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

Nanaimo rappers Konfidential and Teus released their first joint album, <em>The Invasion</em>. (Photo courtesy Raymond Knight)
Nanaimo rappers Konfidential and Teus release first joint album

Duo plan elaborate live-streamed CD release for ‘The Invasion’

Revelstoke-based potter Kaisa Lindfors presents <em>How to Feel Full: An Exploration of Drawing and Journaling on Clay</em> at Nanaimo Ceramic Arts Studio and Gallery from Dec. 3 to 17. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Artist combines ceramics and journaling in first Nanaimo exhibition

Revelstoke’s Kaisa Lindfors presents ‘How to Feel Full’ at Nanaimo Ceramic Arts

Two drivers were taken to hospital with unknown injuries after a hatchback and a convertible collided on the old Island Highway at Oliver Road on Saturday afternoon. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Drivers taken to hospital after T-bone crash on the old Island Highway in Nanaimo

Convertible and hatchback collided at Oliver Road on Saturday afternoon, impacting traffic

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement forecasting windy weather Sunday and Monday. (News Bulletin file photo)
More windy weather on the way for Vancouver Island

Environment Canada issues special weather statement for Victoria, east coast of Island, north Island

Local poet and VIU professor Sonnet L’Abbé wrote and performed a song as part of the city’s Reimagine Nanaimo campaign. (Photo courtesy City of Nanaimo/Port Theatre)
Poet pens song as part of city’s Reimagine Nanaimo campaign

Sonnet L’Abbé encourages a friend to move to the city in ‘Nazaneen: A Song for Nanaimo’

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

A small crash in the water south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon. Two men had to be rescued, but reports indicate there were no serious injuries. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Small plane crash in Comox Valley waters Saturday afternoon

Two rescued from plane that had flipped in water; no serious injuries reported

A rendering of a restaurant building making up part of a development permit application for 113 and 161 Island Highway in Parksville. (IAG Developments image)
Development application delayed for high-profile Parksville property

Council refers restaurant/RV campground application to staff for further improvements

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ board approved a recommendation for Franklyn Street gym demolition. Pictured here, Nanaimo Fire Rescue staff on scene after a gym fire in October 2018. (News Bulletin file)
Nanaimo-Ladysmith school trustees decide to demolish Franklyn Street gym

SD68 board votes to demolish heritage building, damaged by fire in October 2018

Most Read