From left to right: Francis LaPlante, acting CEO Alex Robertson, Ash Mohtadi and Ray Negenman of the Comox Valley Airport demonstrate some of the COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Photo submitted

From left to right: Francis LaPlante, acting CEO Alex Robertson, Ash Mohtadi and Ray Negenman of the Comox Valley Airport demonstrate some of the COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Photo submitted

‘Need to remain vigilant’ at YQQ with small increase in COVID-19 flight exposures

Seven flights between YQQ and the YYC have been flagged for exposure to the virus

While the Comox Valley Airport has seen a small increase in flights with COVID-19 exposures, staff at the airport have remained diligent ensuring protocols remain in place.

Erin Neely, market development manager for YQQ said their pandemic policy was implemented swiftly and now public compliance is virtually complete.

“…Some aspects (were) unpopular with a small fraction of our guests (ticketed passengers only in the terminal and mask requirement in particular), our staff did an amazing job of communicating the new measures kindly. By the time the first inbound case was identified, these policies had been in place for months.”

RELATED: Two Comox-Calgary flights exposed to COVID-19 in the past week

Ever since the BC Centre for Disease Control began identifying flights with COVID-19 exposures, seven flights between YQQ and the Calgary International Aiport have been flagged for exposure to the virus.

Two Comox-Calgary flights recently were identified by the BCCDC with exposures: WestJet flight 3171 from Calgary to Comox on Dec.1 (rows 16 to 19) and WestJet Encore flight 3210 from Comox to Calgary on Nov.29 (rows 7 to 13).

Passengers seated near a case of COVID-19 who were recognized after arrival will no longer be directly notified of their potential exposure. Instead, that information is posted on the BCCDC website.

Neely noted YQQ keeps a close eye on the BCCDC and acting CEO Alex Robertson provides staff and tenants an updates as soon as incidents are identified.

“The procedures don’t change, but each potential serves as a reminder of the need to remain vigilant.”

While there are no new screening processes for passengers travelling to/from YQQ, there are a number of programs being rolled out at the Calgary and Vancouver hubs, in affiliation with airlines and international destinations, confirmed Neely. Updates pertaining to YQQ will be posted to their website (www.comoxairport.com) and social media.

While there have now been several flights connected to the Comox Valley Airport with COVID cases, there have been no outbreaks associated with air travel into or out of the Comox Valley Airport.



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