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COVID-19 sparks additional protections for inland ferries

Ferries in the West Kootenay that will see these changes include Glade and Harrop cable ferries as well as the Kootenay Lake Ferry between Balfour and Kootenay Bay.

Under new guidelines set by Transport Canada to reduce and mitigate the risks of COVID-19, the provincial government announced additional safety measures Monday that are now in place for the Province’s inland ferry system to help protect the safety of passengers and crew.

Effective immediately, passengers boarding inland ferries must comply with the following changes:

  • All inland ferry passengers travelling by vehicle must remain in their vehicles for the duration of the trip.
  • All passenger amenities aboard the ferry are closed until further notice to limit interaction amongst passengers.
  • Walk-on passengers, cyclists and motorcyclists must remain inside designated zones while in the terminal and while aboard the ferry. 
  • Walk-on passengers, cyclists and motorcyclists with symptoms of COVID-19 are not permitted aboard the inland ferries. 

Locally in the West Kootenay, these changes affect the Glade and Harrop cable ferries as well as the Kootenay Lake Ferry between Balfour and Kootenay Bay.

Passengers will also notice these changes on the Needles near Faquier and the Arrow Park Cable Ferry and Upper Arrow Lake in the Arrow Lakes region.

Signage will be displayed at terminals and on overhead messaging signs via DriveBC and posted through websites and social media.

B.C.’s provincial health officer has ordered all British Columbians to avoid all non-essential travel at this time. Enforcement for failing to abide by these new measures could include monetary penalties.

If travel is essential, check DriveBC as busy sailings may experience higher wait times due to reduced passenger limits.

These new measures are effective Monday, April 6, 2020, until further notice.