While it might seem appropriate if 2019 were to end not with a whimper, but with a bang, it appears a “potentially hazardous” asteroid will just miss earth on Boxing Day.
The asteroid, snappily named 310442 (2000 CH59), will come closest to Earth during the early hours of 26 December.
According to Paul Chodas from NASA’s Centre for Near Earth Object Studies, talking to Newsweek, the closest the rock will come to earth will still be about 19 times the distance between us and the moon:
Over many centuries and millennia these asteroids might evolve into Earth-crossing orbits. So it is prudent to keep tracking them for decades to come and to study how their orbits might be evolving.
Given the state of the planet and politics on either side of the Atlantic, one is tempted to think an asteroid putting us out of our misery could be a blessing in disguise but apparently we will not be so lucky. There will be no deep impact, no Armageddon and we’ll have to pick up where we lift off in 2020.
Merry Christmas and happy new year!
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Pool closures a bitter pill for people with disabilities – CBC.ca
Mary Jane Clinkard suffers from a neuromuscular disability that requires her to exercise to maintain her strength, but with municipal pools under lockdown since Boxing Day, she hasn’t been able to do that.
Now her muscles feel weak, stiff and painful, and her independence is in jeopardy. The 50-year-old fears she’ll need a personal support worker to get in and out of her wheelchair if she can’t get back into the water soon.
Clinkard, who has hypotonia, told CBC’s Ottawa Morning it’s especially disheartening when she hears others talking about the activities they’re able to do during the lockdown.
“I get really, really frustrated when I hear, ‘We all go skating or go skiing,’ and I’m like, ‘Well, I can’t do either of those,'” Clinkard said.
Once the pools reopened in July, it took Clinkard months of swimming three times a week to get back into shape. Then Ontario entered another lockdown.
The Sandy Hill woman would like to see swimming pools deemed essential, and said she’s not the only one who depends on them for her health.
“There are other people who cannot walk, who cannot ski, cannot skate,” she said.
According to Dan Chenier, the city’s general manager of recreation, cultural and facility services, the provincial restrictions currently in place don’t allow exemptions for people wishing to use indoor municipal facilities for physical therapy or rehabilitation.
“Provincial authorities have been made aware of the request for an exemption for […] these services and the City will be monitoring the revised regulations for any changes,” Chenier said in an emailed statement.
When am I going to be back in the water? When am I going to be able to swim again?– Mary Jane Clinkard
According to the office of Sylvia Jones, Ontario’s solicitor general, the second wave of COVID-19 poses a serious threat to the province’s most vulnerable.
“The single most important thing Ontarians can do right now to protect our most vulnerable is to stay at home,” wrote Stephen Warner, Jones’s press secretary and issues manager. “As we continue our vaccine rollout, this is our best defense against this virus.”
According to Warner, municipalities don’t have the power to ease restrictions put in place under the province’s lockdown.
Restrictions ‘frustrating and difficult’
Under the stay-at-home order, only “exercising, including walking or moving around outdoors using an assistive mobility device, or using an outdoor recreational amenity” are allowed.
Coun. Matt Luloff, who represents Orléans and sits on the city’s community and protective services committee, called that lack of flexibility “frustrating and difficult.”
Ottawa Morning8:34Pool use for disabled people during lockdown
On Monday, Luloff told Ottawa Morning if exemptions can be made for NHL players, then people who rely on certain facilities for their health and well-being should be granted similar leeway.
“We can say to one group of people that it’s fine to … bubble and to provide entertainment for us,” he told Ottawa Morning on Monday. “But when there’s a real need, a real physical [or] mental health need, that’s just not as important as getting to see the Sens play.”
“Maybe if the city doesn’t feel comfortable opening people pools for everybody, they can open one pool for people who really need it,” Clinkard suggested. “When am I going to be back in the water? When am I going to be able to swim again?”
Report says Ontario planning to open hospital dedicated to COVID-19 patients – Newstalk 610 CKTB (iHeartRadio)
Ontario is preparing to open its first hospital dedicated to treating COVID-19 patients.
The Globe and Mail is reporting that Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital will open next month as COVID-19 infections continue to surge in the province.
This hospital was scheduled to open as part of the Mackenzie Health Network and would be the first brand new hospital in the province in three decades.
With hospitals stretched to the limit, the province reportedly asked Mackenzie health about using the site for COVID-19 patients.
An unnamed official tells the Globe the hospital will initially be staffed by existing Mackenzie workers, with a plan to hire more as capacity increases.
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