A driver hoping to hit the slopes at Whistler this week was stopped en route by police and fined over $1,000 under Canada’s COVID-19 quarantine laws.
According to West Vancouver Police Const. Kevin Goodmurphy, the incident took place on Monday, around 1:15 pm, when “one of our traffic services officers was on Highway 99, near Lions Bay, and noticed a vehicle driving northbound with California license plates.”
Goodmurphy told Daily Hive the officer also noticed that the vehicle’s insurance was expired and pulled the driver over to follow up.
“Through subsequent conversation, the officer also determined that the driver and lone occupant of the vehicle had recently arrived in Canada from the US,” said Goodmurphy on Friday.
Telling the officer they were heading up to Whistler to go snowboarding, the driver also claimed they had been in the country for “a couple of weeks,” he furthered.
However, after the officer contacted Canada Border Services to verify the driver’s claim, it was revealed that they had only been in the country for 12 days and were required to be under quarantine for 14 days.
As a result, “the driver was issued a $1,150 fine under the Quarantine Act, and was turned around and directed back to their quarantine address, which was in North Vancouver,” said Goodmurphy.
And while the person had originally been stopped for no insurance, “they were able to renew their insurance roadside online, and were able to drive away from the scene,” he added.
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And while this is incident is certainly a noticeable one, it’s also not the first such fines to be issued in West Vancouver under new COVID-19 laws.
“Since the new legislation was passed, we have had seven incidents where we’ve issued fines under the COVID-19 related measures act, and eight tickets issued under the Quarantine Act,” said Goodmurphy. “Most of those quarantine acts have been the result of a traffic stop.”
As such, Goodmurphy reminded people that “even with the nicer weather and the desire to get out and enjoy beautiful BC, as tempting as it is, these orders are in place for a reason.”
And with BC’s COVID-19 case numbers the way they are, “we have to be responsible and respectful of other people’s safety, and quarantining is essential,” he added.