The Regional District of Nanaimo transit authority will replace the small buses with larger buses to allow for physical distancing for passengers. (File photo)

COVID-19: Updates from Parksville, Qualicum Beach, RDN

Level 1 Emergency Operations Centre now activated

The City of Parksville and Town of Qualicum Beach are working in unison to provide large-scale emergency support and disaster service to residents of the region.

Both municipalities have emergency programs in place that provide a co-operative and effective approach to managing emergencies in the region and have activated a Level 1 Emergency Operations Centre to ensure the best possible response to COVID-19.

Most of the COVID-19 related information from Qualicum Beach and Parksville going forward will come from Emergency Management Oceanside on behalf of both municipalities.

Both municipalities are also using the Oceanside Community Safety’s Keeping In Touch program in the region, designed to assist seniors who may be concerned about living alone, possibly with medical issues or recovering from a hospital stay.

READ MORE: Have a heart-to-heart in Parksville Community Park

READ MORE: B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Volunteers will call KIT clients each day between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. to check in and ensure they are OK. If no answer after two tries, a system determines if help is needed.

There is no fee for this service and new clients are welcome. Email kit@oceansidecsv.org or call 250 752-2949 (Qualicum Beach) or 250 954-2223 (Parksville) to register.

Other updates from both Parksville, Qualicum Beach and the Regional District of Nanaimo:

Parksville

Public washrooms will remain open in Foster Park, Parksville Community Park and Springwood Park. Washrooms will have limited hours of 7.30 a.m. to dusk with signage asking users to respect physical distancing and personal hygiene necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Qualicum Beach

Due to COVID-19, the washrooms at the Leigh House and on Veteran’s Way are now closed until further notice. Public Washrooms will remain open on the waterfront (Highway 19A) from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. with signage asking users to respect physical distancing and personal hygiene necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19. As well, Rotary Welch Park is closed and those with bookings will be contacted to receive deposit refunds.

Regional District of Nanaimo

The RDN continues to find ways to provide services to residents during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Residents can now buy extra garbage bag tags online at www.getinvolved.rdn.ca/extrabagtags. Each tag will cost $3 and will be billed on your annual utility bill.

For tags purchased online, there is no need to print label(s) to affix to your bag(s). Just set your additional bag(s) out at the curb. Your address and number of tag(s) purchased will be added to the driver’s route list for your selected collection day.

You can also apply for building permits online and access bylaw services, building information and the planning department by emailing planning@rdn.bc.ca or phoning 250-390-6510.

• The RDN is celebrating Water to Earth Month Virtual Activity Passport. Activities it has lined up include: Online webinar-style workshops – Rainwater Harvesting, Efficient Irrigation, Water-wise Gardening; Live-streamed weekly water trivia; Outdoor native plant scavenger hunts; and Educational materials for at-home learning

To take part, download the passport, complete a minimum of one activity per category and submit your completed activity checklist on the RDN’s Get Involved page before April 27.

All passport entries that meet the criteria will be entered to win one of two Grand Prizes: a rain barrel prize pack with five native plants from a local nursery and a Water Saver yard sign plus four other Water Smart prizes – for a total of six big winners. Visit www.getinvolved.rdn.ca/team-watersmart.

• The RDN is happy to see residents using disinfectant and sanitar wipse but it would like advise residents not to flush them down the toilet. All sanitizer wipes, paper towel, napkins or baby wipes will cause blockages. They are to be disposed off in the garbage and securely tied. To learn more about “What Goes Where”, visit: www.rdn.bc.ca/what-goes-where.

• The Regional District of Nanaimo transit authority has advised large buses will replace the smaller transit buses to allow for physical distance for everyone, including drivers. As well, you use the rear door of the bus.

Meanwhile residents are being warned about scams. Should you receive a phone call, email or text message about COVID-19 do not share personal information.

RCMP are warning the public there are many scams circulating which appear to come from the government or health authority. Links may read as “Canada relief fund” or COVID-19 “emergency relief fund.” Protect yourself by deleting the message immediately.

— NEWS Staff

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