COVID-19 numbers in Revelstoke continue to skyrocket.
In Interior Health’s latest weekly updates on Jan. 6, there were 37 more cases between Dec. 27 and Jan. 2. The agency issued a public health alert for the area on Jan. 5.
At 106 cases between January and December of 2020, Revelstoke has one of the highest rates COVID-19 in the province per-capita.
In November, Interior Health declared a community cluster for Revelstoke after there were 22 cases in two weeks. The agency declared the cluster contained on Dec. 11.
Black Press has reached out to Interior Health, asking why no cluster or outbreak has yet been declared for Revelstoke.
Interior Health said it has not determined a specific source for these new cases.
Mayor Gary Sulz said the surging COVID-19 numbers are concerning, but not surprising as several businesses temporarily closed their doors in recent weeks and a number of cases stemmed from Revelstoke schools over Christmas break.
In a radio interview with CBC on Jan. 6, Councillor Cody Younker said the new cases are really worrying. As manager of Southside Market, he said up to 70 per cent of customers recently are visitors to Revelstoke.
Since November, the provincial government has begged Canadians to avoid non-essential travel, especially for recreation.
“People are coming here to ski…it’s so stupid, I don’t understand it,” said Younker.
While travel is most likely contributing to rising COVID-19 numbers, Revelstoke’s Dr. Bart Jarmula said it isn’t the only reason.
Travel may bring the seeds of COVID-19 to Revelstoke, Jarmula said, but residents are allowing the disease to grow and spread through gatherings outside their social bubbles.