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Much of Canada experiencing severe weather as warnings cover 8 provinces – CTV News

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TORONTO —
Ice, snow and freezing rain have blanketed many parts of Canada, as winter continues to hold the country in its grasp.

Environment Canada has issued warnings covering snowfall, freezing rain, winter storms and/or extreme cold for eight provinces and one territory.

Here’s a breakdown of the weather affecting Canadians:

BRITISH COLUMBIA

The Fraser Valley in B.C. was issued a snowfall warning by Environment Canada for Tuesday, alerting drivers that 5 cm of snow was on its way, and would change to rain near noon.

Parts of Vancouver Island had their mail service suspended Monday due to snowy conditions.

Avalanche conditions in the Whistler area have resulted in two fatalities so far this ski season, and two hikers were rescued Monday after getting stuck in icy and slippery conditions on Grouse Mountain.

ALBERTA

Calgary is on its way to a gradual warmup after several consecutive days of wind chill put temperatures at -20 C and below.

Edmonton is also on its way out of a deep freeze after six straight days of highs below –20 C.

SASKATCHEWAN

Regina is also looking forward to a gradual warming after almost two weeks of deep freeze, stemming from the polar vortex that had temperatures measuring as low as -38 C.

Saskatoon also lifted its extreme cold warning for the immediate area.

MANITOBA

Extreme cold warnings were issued across 18 regions across Manitoba by Environment Canada on Tuesday, including for the city of Winnipeg, which broke cold-weather records over the weekend.

Environment Canada said temperatures of -38.8 Celsius were recorded on Feb. 13., breaking a record set in 1879.

NUNAVUT

Extreme cold warnings have been issued for the four regions of Kugaaruk, Gjoa Haven, Resolute and Taloyoak in Nunavut by Environment Canada on Tuesday,with wind chill having conditions feeling like -55 into Wednesday morning.

Environment Canada said to watch for cold-related symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain, muscle pain and weakness, numbness and colour change in fingers and toes.

ONTARIO

The two regions of Fort Frances – Rainy Lake and Kenora – Nestor Falls in northern Ontario were issued extreme cold warnings by Environment Canada on Tuesday, with wind chill values of -40 continuing into Wednesday morning.

Several southern Ontario regions including Hamilton, Brockville and Niargara were issued winter storm warnings by Environment Canada on Tuesday, as the Greater Toronto Area also found itself inundated with snow.

In several districts, all schools and buses were cancelled Tuesday.

The Toronto District School Board said that all bus services were cancelled in light of the snow storm but schools would remain open, as did the Toronto Catholic District School Board.

Grey-Bruce, which includes the Blue Mountains area, was given a snowfall warning early Tuesday afternoon, with strong winds expected to gust up to 50 km/h.

Ottawa is also digging itself out after a winter storm, where Environment Canada warned up to 25cm of snow could fall before the storm finished.

QUEBEC

Vast swaths of Quebec are under both extreme cold and snowfall warnings from Environment Canada as of Tuesday, with 10 to 20 cm expected to fall across the 11 regions listed.

Several Quebec school boards are closed, with temperatures expected to drop to -23 Celsius overnight Tuesday.

THE MARITIMES

Twenty regions in New Brunswick, 24 regions in Newfoundland and Labrador, 23 regions in Nova Scotia, and three regions in P.E.I. are under warnings from Environment Canada on Tuesday as the Maritimes struggle with a winter storm.

The warnings range from snowfall (up to 30 cm in parts of New Brunswick) and winter storm conditions to freezing rain.

The Maritimes can also expect easterly winds with gusts of 30 to 50 km/h until late Wednesday afternoon.

Most of the school boards across the Maritimes cancelled both classes and buses, with some colleges and universities allowing virtual lessons to continue as scheduled, or delayed campus openings.

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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada – Richmond News

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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times Eastern):

4:25 p.m.

Prince Edward Island is ushering in “circuit breaker measures” to interrupt the chain of transmission in the province as it reports six new cases of COVID-19. 

The province’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Heather Morrison, says gatherings must be limited to the immediate household, plus a circle of 10 contacts. 

Organized gatherings will be limited to 50 people, and wedding and funeral receptions are prohibited. 

Sports games and tournaments must be cancelled, and in-person dining is barred. 

2:50 p.m.

Saskatchewan is reporting five new COVID-19-related deaths today and 162 new cases.

All of the people who died were in their 80s or older, according to the province’s daily pandemic update, and were in the Regina, Saskatoon and South East health zones.

The update says 1,548 cases are considered active in Saskatchewan, with 151 people in hospital.

It says 5,211 COVID-19 vaccine doses were administered in the province on Friday, for a total of 75,501 since immunizations began.

2:20 p.m.

Manitoba is reporting 88 new COVID-19 infections as of this morning, as well as four new virus-related deaths.

Officials say two of those who died were in their 80s and two were in their 90s.

All were from the Winnipeg health region.

The government says there are 1,208 active COVID-19 cases in Manitoba, with 189 people in hospital.

Manitoba has recorded 893 COVID-19 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

2 p.m.

Four new cases of COVID-19 are being reported in Nova Scotia today as stricter rules are ushered in to stop the spread of the virus.

Provincial health officials say three of the cases are in the Halifax region and are all close contacts of previously identified patients, while the fourth case in eastern Nova Scotia is related to travel outside Atlantic Canada.

The latest cases come as new measures to control the virus take effect in Halifax and some neighbouring municipalities.

Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer Dr. Robert Strang says while the number of new cases is low, he remains concerned that some recent infections do not have an obvious origin.

12:20 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting two new confirmed cases of COVID-19 today.

Health officials say the new infections are both in the Edmundston region and both patients are between the ages of 70 and 79.

New Brunswick currently has 41 active cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, with one patient hospitalized in intensive care.

All areas of the province remain at the orange level of New Brunswick’s pandemic response plan, which seeks to prevent the resurgence of transmission through a number of restrictions.

11:20 a.m.

Quebec is reporting 858 new COVID-19 cases and 13 deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus, including five deaths in the past 24 hours.

The Health Department reported 599 hospitalizations today, a drop of 21 patients. There are also seven fewer people requiring intensive care, bringing the total to 112.

Quebec administered 15,902 doses of COVID-19 vaccine on Friday for a total of 418,399.

The latest numbers come one year after the first case of COVID-19 was declared in Quebec.

The province has reported 287,003 confirmed infections and 10,385 deaths since the pandemic began.

11 a.m.

Ontario’s COVID-19 case count is nearing the 300,000 mark. 

The province reported 1,185 new infections today for a total of 299,754 since the onset of the pandemic. 

Ontario also reported 16 new virus-related deaths over the past 24 hours. 

Health Minister Christine Elliott says Toronto saw 331 new cases in the past 24 hours, nearby Peel Region recorded 220 and York Region logged 119.

Hospitalizations in the province declined by three to 680, with 276 patients in intensive care and 182 on a ventilator.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021

The Canadian Press

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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada – Richmond News

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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times Eastern):

2:50 p.m.

Saskatchewan is reporting five new COVID-19-related deaths today and 162 new cases.

All of the people who died were in their 80s or older, according to the province’s daily pandemic update, and were in the Regina, Saskatoon and South East health zones.

The update says 1,548 cases are considered active in Saskatchewan, with 151 people in hospital.

It says 5,211 COVID-19 vaccine doses were administered in the province on Friday, for a total of 75,501 since immunizations began.

2:20 p.m.

Manitoba is reporting 88 new COVID-19 infections as of this morning, as well as four new virus-related deaths.

Officials say two of those who died were in their 80s and two were in their 90s.

All were from the Winnipeg health region.

The government says there are 1,208 active COVID-19 cases in Manitoba, with 189 people in hospital.

Manitoba has recorded 893 COVID-19 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

2 p.m.

Four new cases of COVID-19 are being reported in Nova Scotia today as stricter rules are ushered in to stop the spread of the virus.

Provincial health officials say three of the cases are in the Halifax region and are all close contacts of previously identified patients, while the fourth case in eastern Nova Scotia is related to travel outside Atlantic Canada.

The latest cases come as new measures to control the virus take effect in Halifax and some neighbouring municipalities.

Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer Dr. Robert Strang says while the number of new cases is low, he remains concerned that some recent infections do not have an obvious origin.

12:20 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting two new confirmed cases of COVID-19 today.

Health officials say the new infections are both in the Edmundston region and both patients are between the ages of 70 and 79.

New Brunswick currently has 41 active cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, with one patient hospitalized in intensive care.

All areas of the province remain at the orange level of New Brunswick’s pandemic response plan, which seeks to prevent the resurgence of transmission through a number of restrictions.

11:20 a.m.

Quebec is reporting 858 new COVID-19 cases and 13 deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus, including five deaths in the past 24 hours.

The Health Department reported 599 hospitalizations today, a drop of 21 patients. There are also seven fewer people requiring intensive care, bringing the total to 112.

Quebec administered 15,902 doses of COVID-19 vaccine on Friday for a total of 418,399.

The latest numbers come one year after the first case of COVID-19 was declared in Quebec.

The province has reported 287,003 confirmed infections and 10,385 deaths since the pandemic began.

11 a.m.

Ontario’s COVID-19 case count is nearing the 300,000 mark. 

The province reported 1,185 new infections today for a total of 299,754 since the onset of the pandemic. 

Ontario also reported 16 new virus-related deaths over the past 24 hours. 

Health Minister Christine Elliott says Toronto saw 331 new cases in the past 24 hours, nearby Peel Region recorded 220 and York Region logged 119.

Hospitalizations in the province declined by three to 680, with 276 patients in intensive care and 182 on a ventilator.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021

The Canadian Press

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Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Saturday – CBC.ca

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The latest:

After a year of struggling to boost coronavirus testing, communities across the United States are seeing plummeting demand, leading to shuttered testing sites or even attempts to return supplies.

The drop in screening comes at a significant moment in the outbreak: Experts are cautiously optimistic that COVID-19 is receding after killing more than 510,000 people in the U.S., but they are concerned that emerging variants could prolong the epidemic.

U.S. testing hit a peak on Jan. 15, when the country was averaging more than two million tests per day. Since then, the average number of daily tests has fallen more than 28 per cent. The drop mirrors declines across all major virus measures since January, including new cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

Officials say those encouraging trends — together with harsh winter weather, the end of the holiday travel season, pandemic fatigue and a growing focus on vaccination — are sapping interest in testing.

“When you combine all those together, you see this decrease,” said Dr. Richard Pescatore of the health department in Delaware, where daily testing has fallen more than 40 per cent since the January peak. “People just aren’t going to go out to testing sites.”

U.S. President Joe Biden has promised to revamp the country’s testing system by investing billions more in supplies and government co-ordination. But with demand falling fast, the country may soon have a glut of unused supplies. The U.S. will be able to conduct nearly one billion monthly tests by June, according to projections from researchers at Arizona State University. That’s more than 25 times the country’s current rate of about 40 million tests reported per month.

With more than 150 million new vaccine doses due for delivery by late March, testing is likely to fall further as local governments shift staff and resources to giving shots.

“You have to pick your battles here,” said Dr. Jeffrey Engel of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists. “Everyone would agree that if you have one public health nurse, you’re going to use that person for vaccination, not testing.”


What’s happening across Canada

As of 11:15 p.m. ET on Saturday, Canada had reported 863,522 cases of COVID-19, with 30,786 cases considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 21,944.

Canada’s top doctor said that nationally, there are 964 reported cases of the coronavirus variant first detected in the U.K., up from 429 reported two weeks ago. There were also 44 cases of the variant first discovered in South Africa and two cases of the version first found in Brazil.

“The risk of rapid re-acceleration remains,” Dr. Theresa Tam said on Friday. “At the same time, new variants continue to emerge … and can become predominant.”

On Friday, Health Canada regulators approved the COVID-19 vaccine from Oxford University-AstraZeneca for use in Canada — clearing the way for millions more inoculations in the months ahead.

British Columbia recorded 589 new cases of COVID-19 and seven more deaths on Friday.

Alberta announced 356 new cases and three more deaths. Meanwhile, health officials confirmed two more deaths linked to an outbreak at the Olymel meatpacking plant in Red Deer, bringing the total to three.

Saskatchewan registered 153 new cases but no new deaths.

Manitoba confirmed 64 new cases and one death. The province’s test positivity rate is now at 3.9 per cent, its lowest point in more than four months.

WATCH | Manitoba government considers relaxing COVID-19 rules:

Provincial officials give update on COVID-19 outbreak: Thursday, February 25, 2021. 28:23

Ontario reported 1,185 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, as well as 16 new deaths.

The province also announced Friday it is activating an “emergency brake” in Thunder Bay and Simcoe-Muskoka, sending the regions back into lockdown to “immediately interrupt transmission and contain community spread.”

The two regions will move into the grey lockdown level of Ontario’s COVID-19 restriction plan effective 12:01 a.m. ET on Monday, March 1. 

Quebec reported 858 new cases and 13 new deaths on Saturday.

WATCH | Quebec plans for COVID-19 ‘immunity passports’:

Quebec plans to introduce ‘immunity passports’ at some point, which will allow people to prove they’ve been vaccinated and make it simpler to travel and perhaps even open some sectors of the economy. The concept is controversial, however, with some leaders calling it divisive and discriminatory. 4:41

New Brunswick reported two new cases on Saturday. The province is about a week away from rolling into the less-restrictive yellow phase, says Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Jennifer Russell.

Newfoundland and Labrador‘s active caseload dropped again as the province reported 52 new recoveries — a single-day record — and four new cases.

Nova Scotia is introducing new restrictions as it tries to stem an increase in COVID-19 cases. The province reported 10 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday after reporting eight the day before.

Beginning Saturday, restaurants and bars in the Halifax area must stop serving food and drinks by 9 p.m. and must close by 10 p.m. Restrictions are also being placed on sports, arts and culture events.

WATCH | Nova Scotia imposes new COVID-19 restrictions:

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, announced new COVID-19 restrictions on Friday, in hopes of limiting the spread of the virus. 4:10

In Prince Edward Island, all young people in Summerside aged 14 to 29 are being urged to get tested immediately, whether or not they have any symptoms, after Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison announced a cluster of new cases there.

In Nunavut, authorities have identified another case in the hamlet of Arviat, a community of about 3,000 people where 312 cases have been confirmed since November. Active cases there are now at 26.

In the Northwest Territories, a Gahcho Kué mine worker who contracted COVID-19 is in critical condition, health authorities confirmed Friday. The territory has seen a total of four people hospitalized for complications related to COVID-19, with three connected to the Gahcho Kué mine. All but one have recovered.

What’s happening around the world

As of Saturday morning, more than 113.5 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, with 63.8 million of them listed as recovered on a tracking site maintained by Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll stood at more than 2.5 million, according to the U.S.-based university. 

In the Middle East, Iran’s Health Ministry said the country expects to receive 250,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine from China on Saturday. Alireza Raisi, deputy health minister, said the country will receive doses of other vaccines, including from India, in the “near future” as Iran struggles to fight the worst outbreak of the pandemic in the Middle East.

In Asia, more than 500,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine arrived in Hong Kong on Saturday following a two-day delay due to export procedures, offering a second inoculation option for the city. The Pfizer-BioNTech shots will be offered to about 2.4 million eligible residents from priority groups, such as those aged 60 and older and health-care workers.

Chris Tang, commissioner of the Hong Kong Police Force, receives a dose of the Sinovac Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine at a community vaccination center in Hong Kong on Feb. 23. ( Paul Yeung/Pool/Reuters)

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Saturday that the country’s biggest city, Auckland, will be put into a seven-day lockdown from Sunday after a coronavirus community case of unknown origin was recorded. The rest of New Zealand will be put into Level 2 restrictions that limit public gatherings, among others, she told a news conference.

In Europe, French authorities have ordered a local weekend lockdown starting on Friday evening in the French Riviera city of Nice and the surrounding coastal area to try to curb the spread of the virus.

People gather outside a COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Edmonton on Friday. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press)

A Second World War-era plane flew Saturday over the funeral service of Capt. Sir Tom Moore to honour the veteran who single-handedly raised millions of pounds for Britain’s health workers by walking laps in his backyard. Moore’s charity walk inspired the nation and raised almost 33 million pounds ($58.5 million Cdn). Captain Tom, as he became known, died Feb. 2 in hospital after testing positive for COVID-19.

In the United States, the House of Representatives passed a $1.9 trillion US coronavirus relief package early Saturday. If approved by the Senate, the American Rescue Plan will pay for vaccines and medical supplies and send a new round of emergency financial aid to households, small businesses and state and local governments. Democrats said the package was needed to fight a pandemic that has killed more than 500,000 Americans and thrown millions out of work.

In Africa, Ivory Coast has become the second country in the world, after Ghana, to receive a shipment of COVID-19 vaccines from the global COVAX initiative. It has received 504,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine made by the Serum Institute of India.

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