Penticton’s Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) is actively preparing plans to safely ‘restart’ select City facilities and services based on the newly announced provincial health guidelines.
“Our top priority is the community’s safety and health. We are taking every precautionary step to maintain safety measures while leading our city toward recovery,” said Penticton Fire Chief and EOC Deputy Director, Larry Watkinson. “Things are not going to be the same but we’re working toward the new normal.”
The EOC in recent weeks has been working towards creating an assessment tool to evaluate the risk of reopening individual City facilities and sporting fields. This process has involved corresponding with local sports organizations, recreational groups and the BC Recreation and Parks Association.
After receiving further guidelines May 6 involving BC’s Restart Plan, the EOC is moving ahead with measures to assess resuming certain activity, taking a phased approach. Ongoing updates will be posted on the City’s new “Restart the City Guide” at penticton.ca/restart.
To support restart measures, the EOC encourages all Penticton residents to abide by the following five guiding principles issued by the Government of BC.
- Personal hygiene: Wash your hands often, cough into your sleeve, considering wearing a non-medical mask and don’t shake hands.
- Stay home if you are sick: This will involve routine daily screening. Anyone with any symptoms must stay away from others. Returning travellers must self-isolate.
- Environmental hygiene: Clean more frequently, enhance surface sanitation in high-touch areas and use touch-less technology wherever possible.
- Safe social interactions: Meet with small numbers of people, maintain a distance between yourself and others, choose outdoor over indoor locations and consider the size of the room (the bigger, the better).
- Physical modifications: Consider spacing within rooms or in transit, the room design, the movement of people within spaces and the usage of Plexiglass barriers.
“These next couple of weeks will be a crucial time for Penticton and it’s important to abide by these guidelines. We need to continue to make progress on ending the spread of COVID-19, allowing us to fully shift our attention to restarting Penticton,” said Mayor John Vassilaki.