Note: This article has been updated with more information announced by the Ministry of Health during their daily 3 p.m. briefing.
People returning to B.C. from other parts of the world will be required to have a self isolation plan in place upon arrival, said Premier John Horgan at a briefing on Wednesday.
These rules apply to those returning to Vancouver International Airport from other parts of the world, as well as land crossings at the Canada-U.S. border.
Snowbirds and people coming back to B.C. on repatriation flights will be met with federal or provincial officials and required to fill out a form explaining how they plan to self isolate.
Translation services will be provided to help those for whom English is a second language.
Those who do not have a self isolation plan will be placed into a mandatory quarantine facility for 14 days or until they are able to come up with a plan.
Furthermore, tomorrow will be the last day for flights originating in the U.S. returning to Victoria and Kelowna.
Currently, the only international flights arriving at Victoria International Airport are from Seattle. After Thursday, YVR will be the only destination for inbound flights from other countries.
“As we follow the advice and guidance of our provincial health officer, it’s also important to take care of one another. By supporting people through a self-isolation plan after international travel, we will keep people safe and help flatten the curve,” said Premier Horgan.
These measures will be enforced by the federal government through the Quarantine Act.
Maximum penalties for breaking the order include fines of up to $750,000 and/or imprisonment for six months, or up to $1 million and/or imprisonment up to three years for a person who causes a risk of imminent death or serious bodily harm.
There is currently no information about where quarantine facilities will be set up for people who do not have a self isolation plan in place. The Ministry of Health will be partnering with the province to oversee these quarantine facilities.
Additionally, health officials will be checking in on travellers self isolating at home to make sure they have all the supplies they need to be able to safely isolate themselves.
Further, Premier Horgan hopes that travellers returning from Vancouver to Vancouver Island will understand the importance of self isolation and go straight home once they are back on the island.
There is no system in place to ensure compliance.
The BCCDC has set up a 2019 novel coronavirus telephone information line at 1-833-784-4397 for those who have further questions about this disease.
Anyone concerned that they may have been exposed to, or are experiencing symptoms of the novel coronavirus, should contact their primary care provider, local public health office, or call 8-1-1.
The Province has also created the 1-888-COVID-19 line to connect British Columbians needing non-medical information about the coronavirus pandemic.
As of the time of publication, the total number of COVID-19 patients worldwide has risen to 1,489,457.
Over 87,200 people have died from the illness and 318,876 have made a full recovery.