Interior Health has identified 19 additional COVID-19 cases as part of the ongoing cluster at Big White Mountain.
The outbreak was first declared in mid-December, caused by what health officials describe as transmission from “social activity in homes and accommodations.”
The health authority says that a total of 162 COVID-19 cases have been identified as part of the cluster. Of those, 107 reside on Big White Mountain.
There are 29 active cases that are currently isolating and 133 individuals who have since recovered.
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In mid-December, Big White Ski Resort cancelled reservations for guests who reside outside of the Central Okanagan.
The mountain is encouraging only season pass holders and locals to visit the resort, in keeping with public health advice. The mountain has since reached out to all guests whose addresses indicate they live out of town to offer a full refund for their reservation or an opportunity to re-book later.
“Though the decisions we’ve made have financial consequences and disappointed many families who were looking to enjoy the holidays at Big White Ski Resort, we have no doubt that it was the right decision,” Big White’s president and CEO Peter Plimmer said in a news release.
“We care profoundly about our employees, our local community, and about doing the right thing.”
Interior Health reminds everyone within the community to avoid social gatherings and limit contact to their immediate household bubbles.
“The risk remains low for families and individuals visiting Big White Mountain who follow public health guidance,” says the health authority in a statement. “In other words, it is safe to go to Big White when you stick to your immediate household bubble and avoid socializing and gathering.”
Community outreach for testing and public health inspections will continue to take place within the resort.
With files from Megan Devlin