Seven contractors on the same shift have returned positive COVID-19 tests at Teck’s Elkford operations in the last few days.
According to an internal email on Aug. 21 that was seen by The Free Press, two workers at the water treatment facility under construction near Fording River self-reported that they had begun experiencing flu-like symptoms partway through their shift.
They were taken off site to be tested, while the remainder of the same crew were also removed from the site for self-isolation.
After the two workers returned positive tests, the rest of the same crew were then tested, of which five returned positive tests.
Another 12 have returned negative tests, while according to Teck five results are still pending.
“(The B.C. Centre for Disease Control) stated that anyone not having direct contact with the workers who tested positive are at a very low risk of contracting CV-19,” said the email sent to workers who were on the same shift.
B.C. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reported on Aug. 27 that six of the cases at the construction site were Alberta residents, while one was from Vancouver Island.
Teck told The Free Press that all of the positive cases were members of a night-shift construction crew that worked between Aug. 14 and Aug.18.
The company reported that four of the positive cases were staying at the employee lodge in Elkford, while three were in private accommodations.
“All of the individuals worked only at the construction site and did not work in any areas of the actual Fording River Operations or interact with any Teck operations employees,” said the company in a release.
All of the individuals have since returned to their home communities and are isolating.
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