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Coronavirus: AHS officials now stationed at international arrivals at Calgary airport

Alberta health officials now stationed at international arrivals at Calgary airport
WATCH: International travellers arriving at YYC Calgary International Airport will now see new preventative health measures when they enter the terminal. Jill Croteau reports.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Alberta health officials have been set up at international arrival gates at Calgary International Airport — reinforcing a message of mandatory self-isolation to returning travelers.

Although it can be a daunting sight, Joni Belanger, a Calgarian who recently arrived home from her vacation in Panama, said she appreciates the reinforced messaging.

“I was nervous and I had a lot of anxiety,” Belanger said.

“But it was seamlessly quick and now I will go home and self isolate.”

READ MORE: Calgary International 1 of 4 Canadian airports to accept international flights during COVID-19 pandemic

Steph Love and Scott White also recently returned home from Costa Rica.

They said safety efforts had ramped up substantially in Calgary since they left for their vacation two weeks ago.

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“We are self-isolating. There was a lot of reinforcing that. There were at least three different signage we had to agree

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to, to get to this point,” White said.

“We’ve been gone for two weeks — when we left it wasn’t a panic.”

YYC focused on ‘sustaining essential services’ and helping Canadians returning home during COVID-19 pandemic
YYC focused on ‘sustaining essential services’ and helping Canadians returning home during COVID-19 pandemic

Reid Fiest with Calgary Airport Authority, said this is a stressful time for the public, guests and staff.

He said the two-week order isn’t the only measure workers are taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19, but staff are also increasing cleaning and sanitizing methods.

Feist said the airport is also recommending taxi and rideshare options for travellers to get home from the airport — as drivers have been asked to clean their vehicles after each ride.

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 “If they have family picking them up, they may also have to consider those self-isolation

recommendations from public health authorities.”

READ MORE: Alberta orders all classes cancelled, daycares closed as COVID-19 cases rise to 56 in the province

Fiest said airport authority officials are able to manage capacity at this point, but that may change as airline

carriers conduct more repatriation flights.

As for retailers, some have totally shut down in the airport, others reduced their hours significantly.