Canada is cutting its service hours at 27 low-traffic border crossings on a temporary basis as part of the government’s COVID-19 response, the Canada Border Services Agency says.
The CBSA said in a statement late Tuesday that the measures, which affect crossings in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Quebec, will begin at 11:59 p.m. ET on Wednesday and remain in effect until further notice.
The cuts mean some ports of entry normally open 24 hours a day will close earlier, while some border crossings with already reduced schedules will see their hours cut further and close on the weekends.
The new hours are:
- Cascade, B.C.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Nelway, B.C: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Rykerts, B.C.: 7: a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Carway, Alta: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Del Bonita, Alta.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.
- Climax, Sask: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.
- Carievale, Sask: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Estevan, Sask.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Monchy, Sask: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.
- Northgate, Sask.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Oungre, Sask.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Regway, Sask: 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
- West Poplar River, Sask.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.
- Coulter, Man: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Goodlands, Man.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Gretna, Man.: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Lena, Man.: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Windygates, Man.: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Winkler, Man.: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Chartierville, Que: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Frelighsburg, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Hemmingford, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Highwater, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Lacolle Route 221, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Lacolle 223, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Morses Line, Que.: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (This location will be available to travellers only. Commercial traffic will have to use another entry.)
- Trout River, Que.: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
“Economic supply chains and trade will remain open, and we will work to ensure that access to goods and services is not interrupted. As such, these changes should not affect commercial traffic,” the CBSA statement said.
“The CBSA remains committed to ensuring that Indigenous people continue to be able to move within and between their communities, and are able to provide and access essential goods and services.”
The stepped-up measures come a day after the government announced stricter measures under the Quarantine Act.
Canadians returning home from abroad already had to self-isolate for 14 days on their return, but now those who don’t have a credible plans to do so will be forced to stay at a quarantine facility, such as a hotel.
In addition, travellers returning from abroad will be required to wear a non-medical mask or face covering before they can proceed to their final destination. They will be provided with a mask if they do not have one.
The government announced in mid-March that it was closing the border to most non-citizens — but that initial announcement had several exceptions, including for Americans. Days later, Canada and the U.S. announced a temporary closure to all non-essential traffic in a push to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
As of 6 a.m ET Wednesday, Canada had reported 27,063 presumptive and confirmed cases of COVID-19. The provinces and territories that post data about recovered cases list 8,248 cases as resolved or recovered.
A tally of COVID-19 deaths maintained by CBC News has recorded 980 deaths in Canada, with another two coronavirus-related deaths abroad.