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B.C. to decide on COVID-19 event capacity changes by end of this week

Click to play video: 'COVID-19 cases and B.C. event capacity limits' COVID-19 cases and B.C. event capacity limits
B.C.'s COVID case numbers are remaining high, and that could impact plans to increase capacity for things like Canucks games, movie theatres and music events. Emad Agahi reports – Oct 12, 2021

The province will decide by the end of this week whether it intends to change the capacity limits for organized events held during the COVID-19 pandemic.

British Columbia is one of the last provinces in Canada with guest number restrictions in place for events like weddings, hockey games, concerts, and theatre performances.

Those rules are now under review, said Dr. Bonnie Henry, as the deadline for requiring proof of double vaccination at events approaches.

Click to play video: 'B.C. to decide on COVID-19 event capacity changes by end of week' B.C. to decide on COVID-19 event capacity changes by end of week
B.C. to decide on COVID-19 event capacity changes by end of week – Oct 12, 2021

READ MORE: B.C. to hopefully start offering COVID vaccines for children in early November

“Our intent was always, when the full vaccine card came into effect, that we would be able to go 100 per cent capacity and take away some of the other restrictions we have around some events, like dancing and remaining seated,” said Dr. Henry, the provincial health officer, in a Tuesday press briefing.

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She said officials are examining the epidemiological situation in parts of the province where this might not be in effect. “The situation in the north comes to mind,” she said. “We will be making a decision about that by the end of this week.”

Beginning Oct. 24, provincial health orders mandate that event organizers must obtain vaccine card proof of double vaccination, and deny entry to those who can’t produce it.

Those rules remain in effect for the length of an event, such as a multi-day sporting tournament.

Click to play video: '55 ICU patients have now been transferred out of Northern Health as COVID crisis worsens' 55 ICU patients have now been transferred out of Northern Health as COVID crisis worsens
55 ICU patients have now been transferred out of Northern Health as COVID crisis worsens – Oct 12, 2021

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Right now, a maximum of 50 people, or 50 per cent of a venue’s capacity, can attend organized indoor “seated events.” Indoor fairs and trade shows in which guests are walking and browsing can be held at 100 per cent venue capacity.

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Organized outdoor seated gatherings can be held with a maximum of 5,000 people or up to 50 per cent of a venue’s capacity, while walk-through fairs and festivals can use 100 per cent of venue capacity.

As it stands, vaccine cards are required to enter indoor ticketed sporting events with more than 50 people, and indoor concerts, theatre, dance and symphony events with more than 50 people.

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