Canada added roughly 8,400 new coronavirus cases on Thursday to end 2020, as both Ontario and Quebec broke single-day case records.
The staggering total comes after Alberta’s announcement of “about 1,200 new cases” on Thursday. New lab-confirmed cases in the country totals at exactly 7,211, but shoots up to a record-breaking 8,400 after factoring Alberta’s announcement.
The country now has over 579,000 cases in total and at least 15,605 deaths after adding 133 more fatalities from COVID-19. More than 489,000 people have since recovered from the virus, while over 18.4 million tests have been administered to date, without counting Alberta’s data.
The year is also ending with new travel rules set to come in place in the next few days that require all incoming travellers to Canada to have received a negative COVID-19 test result in the last 72 hours.
According to a statement, any new arrivals would need to show a negative COVID-19 test to their airline before boarding, and would have to accept quarantine in a facility if officials aren’t satisfied with their plan complete the mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival.
Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said in a statement, however, that the new procedure was not meant to be a replacement for the quarantine.
“As the global situation evolves, we continue to work with our partners to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 into Canada at all international ports of entry,” said Hadju.
Canada’s chief public health officer, Theresa Tam, said she is deeply concerned Canadians are still travelling for non-essential reasons, ignoring advice not to do so.
“I am asking Canadians to reassess any travel plans,” she said.
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Her statement comes as Ontario’s minister of finance, Rod Phillips, resigned Thursday after returning from a vacation in the Caribbean, a decision that went against the province’s advice to avoid non-essential travel and one he said he regrets.
Ontario added 3,328 cases Thursday, setting a new single-day record for the province, besting Wednesday’s total of 2,923 cases.
The province also announced 56 more deaths from the virus. There are currently 1,235 people in hospital with the virus, the most since the pandemic began, with 337 of them in intensive care.
Quebec passed 200,000 coronavirus cases on Thursday after adding 2,819 cases for the day — a single-day record for the province.
The province also reported 62 more deaths, 22 of which occurred in the last 24 hours. There are currently 1,175 hospitalizations in the province, 165 of them in intensive care.
Out east, New Brunswick reported its ninth death from the virus, an individual in their 40s, and three more cases. The province currently has 28 active cases.
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Nova Scotia announced three new cases on Thursday and said that restaurants and licensed establishments can re-open for dine-in services next week after being closed since mid-November.
The province currently has 22 active cases and received its first shipment of the Moderna vaccine Thursday, a day after New Brunswick.
Meanwhile, two Canadian Coast Guard vessels have been put under lockdown near the coast of Dartmouth, N.S., after they were exposed to a COVID-19 positive contractor. Testing of the crew has begun on both vessels.
Newfoundland and Labrador and P.E.I. did not report any more cases or deaths.
Manitoba reported 187 new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday and six deaths. The province currently has 337 hospitalizations related to the virus and 4,505 active cases.
Saskatchewan added 190 new cases Thursday and one more death but noted its active cases are lowering. There are now 2,699 active cases in the province, the lowest amount since Nov. 22. There are currently 142 people in hospital.
Alberta reported an estimated 1,200 cases, with 921 people currently in hospital, 152 of whom are in ICU.
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British Columbia reported 681 more lab-confirmed cases and eight more deaths Thursday as well, which pushed its caseload and fatalities to 51,524 and 901, respectively.
None of the territories released new data Thursday, but the Northwest Territories did begin its rollout of its first doses of the Moderna vaccine.
There are currently 83,192,664 coronavirus cases around the world and 1,813,229 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.
— With files from Global Staff and the Canadian Press
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Amazon stops alcohol sales in Northern Ireland due to Brexit rules: ITV
LONDON (Reuters) – Amazon has halted sales of wines, beers and spirits in Northern Ireland and is preparing to de-list more products due to new Brexit customs rules, broadcaster ITV reported on Tuesday.
The online retailer is concerned that excise duty will now have to be paid twice on shipments of alcohol which are sent from the British mainland across the Irish Sea to Northern Ireland, ITV reported.
Britain left the European Union’s single market and customs union on Dec. 31, introducing paperwork and customs declarations for those businesses that import and export goods with the bloc.
In order to keep the border open between the British province of Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland, a separate agreement was struck that requires a regulatory border in the Irish Sea between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom.
The British government said the overwhelming majority of parcels continued to move smoothly, and there was no reason for businesses not to send goods to Northern Ireland.
“These goods will not be taxed twice, and we will issue new guidance clarifying the position to ensure any remaining issues are addressed,” a government spokesman said.
(Reporting by Andrew MacAskill and Paul Sandle; editing by Costas Pitas and Sarah Young)
Understanding and Saving on Alberta Car Insurance
Finding car insurance can be stressful and challenging, especially for those who don’t have much experience in average rates and coverage
The Many Ways to Save on Auto Insurance in Alberta
Many factors affect Alberta’s car insurance rates, from the condition of your vehicle to where you drive and park, or even your educational and driving history! The following are just a few of the ways that you may be able to save on your auto insurance rates.
By starting with online comparison, you will be able to check average auto insurance rates in Alberta. If you’ve been with the same insurer for a long time, it may be challenging to beat their rates (especially if you haven’t had any recent claims), but it’s always worth looking. If you don’t have a good driving record, keep in mind that this will only affect you for approximately three years. At that time, previously incurred tickets will be removed from your history, and your premiums may be reduced.
If you haven’t done so already, you can complete a driving course in an attempt to reduce your insurance premiums with some insurance companies. If the car you’re currently driving isn’t worth very much, consider only getting the minimal coverage required by law, without collision damage. This will likely mean that you’ll have liability insurance and will still be protected if you damage someone’s vehicle, but the damages on your vehicle will not be covered.
If you’re a more experienced driver, you may be able to save by increasing your car insurance deductibles and thus incurring higher payments for damages in case of an accident.
Something as simple as where you park your vehicle can also affect your insurance rates. By parking in a safe location, like a private or secure garage, you will likely receive lower premiums. If you need multiple kinds of insurance coverage (like auto, home, and life insurance), many companies will give you the option to bundle them together for a discounted rate.
Graduates of individual Canadian universities may be eligible for a discounted rate from some insurance providers. Some insurance providers will offer a discount to members of specific professional organizations, such as Certified Management Accountants of Canada or The Air Canada Pilots Association.
As a senior citizen, you will also save since most companies offer discounts to seniors.
Understanding Auto Insurance in Alberta
When choosing auto insurance, it’s essential to understand the kinds of insurance available to you. This will ensure that you choose a plan that works best for you and that you don’t end up paying for things you don’t need.
Although auto insurance is required by law in Alberta, the government only regulates the minimal amount of third-party liability insurance on your automobile, which is $200,000. In contrast, we recommend having at least $1,000,000 to $2,000,000 in liability coverage to protect yourself and your finances should an accident happen.
Alberta uses an “at-fault” insurance approach for bodily injury and vehicle damage liability. In contrast, the province uses a “no-fault” approach to accident benefits coverage, meaning that each insurer pays its policyholder’s claim. Alberta’s car insurance rates are at an average of $110 per month, which are not the highest in Canada. Still, you must understand what is offered to search for the best price properly.
The Types of Automobile Insurance Offered
Starting with basic coverage, all drivers within Alberta’s province need personal liability and property damage (PLPD) insurance, which is also referred to as third-party liability insurance. This is legally mandatory to drive within the province, as it covers damages caused by your vehicle to another person or their property.
Although the minimum is currently $200,000, it is wise to seek a higher coverage amount, as stated above. Alberta also requires drivers to have accident benefits coverage, as this covers the passengers of a vehicle in the event of injury or death. Regardless of who may be at fault, this kind of insurance will cover medical and rehabilitation costs, funeral expenses, death benefits, and income replacement, depending on the situation. Accident benefits will also give you uninsured motorist coverage if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured driver.
Although third-party liability and accident benefits insurance is the minimum requirements necessary to drive in Alberta, other types of coverage may interest you. For example, collision coverage will cover any repairs to your vehicle that have been caused by an accident with another vehicle or an object. Best of all, the repair or replacement of your vehicle is covered, regardless of whether or not you are at fault for the damages.
Comprehensive insurance goes a step further by covering damages to your vehicle that were not the result of an accident or collision of any kind. This insurance protects your vehicle from threats, including fire, theft, vandalism, and environmental or weather-related damages. This is the most significant degree of coverage available through an auto insurance policy.
Canada to unveil more steps to restrict foreign travel, provinces impatient with delay
By David Ljunggren
OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada will soon make foreign travel harder in a bid to clamp down on the coronavirus, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Tuesday without giving details, prompting major provinces to demand action.
A second wave of coronavirus is sweeping Canada and health officials say some hospitals run the risk of being overwhelmed. Trudeau is urging Canadians not to travel abroad and said Ottawa intended to introduce more restrictions.
“All options are on the table and we will be announcing new measures very soon,” he said, triggering frustration from Quebec and Ontario, the two most populous provinces.
Trudeau had previously said one possibility would be to oblige arriving passengers to spend a 14-day quarantine period in a hotel at their own expense. The idea was initially proposed by Quebec premier Francois Legault.
“I repeat our demand to Mr. Trudeau – it’s time to act,” Legault told reporters. “We can either ban non-essential travel or isolate travelers in hotels.”
People arriving from abroad currently only have to promise they will go into two weeks of quarantine. Everyone flying into Canada must provide a mandatory negative test for coronavirus.
Ontario premier Doug Ford told reporters Ottawa should go much further, saying, “I can’t for the life of me figure out why we aren’t testing every single person that comes through this airport … We have to lock down.”
Canada, which has so far recorded a total of 19,238 deaths and 753,011 cases, says it is still on track to vaccinate the entire population by the end of September.
Trudeau said he did not expect Canada to be affected by new shortages of vaccines that are hitting some European Union nations. The issues largely center around AstraZeneca Plc’s vaccine, which Canada has not approved yet, he said.
(Additional reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal and Moira Warburton in Vancouver:; Editing by Franklin Paul, Matthew Lewis and Giles Elgood)
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