Highway checkpoint being set up west of Virden

New COVID-19 measures include information signage on Manitoba highways / airports

Drivers coming and going at the Saskatchewan/Manitoba border will soon encounter checkpoints. It’s part of a province-wide effort against the spread of the coronavirus.

The checkpoints and information there are part of the provincial government’s strategy to flatten the curve – to keep the COVID-19 outbreak from overwhelming the medical resources.

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The announcement came on Friday, March 27, from Justice Minister Cliff Cullen and Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler.

“We must do everything we can to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our communities and on our health-care system,” said Cullen.  “This approach will help ensure travellers know they must self-isolate, what the province’s state of emergency means to them and other important public health information. By being informed, we can reduce the risk to Manitobans and help keep our communities healthy and safe.”

Immediately, five highway checkpoints will be in place along with information in airports to inform travellers about public health measures.

The international border between Canada and the USA was shut to non-essential traffic earlier this week.

Checkpoints at the Saskatchewan border:

     - Trans-Canada Highway West (west of Kirkella/Elkhorn/Virden);

     - PTH 16 (west of Russell);

     - PTH 5W (west of Roblin); and

     - PTH 2 (west of Sinclair/Reston/Souris).

Checkpoints at the Ontario border:

     -  Trans-Canada Highway East (West Hawk Lake/Falcon Lake);

Signage will also be placed at the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport and the Brandon Municipal Airport to ensure people arriving on domestic flights have similar information.

If Manitobans need assistance with groceries, prescription pickup and other services, they are encouraged to go to www.HelpNextDoorMB.ca.

“We expect these checkpoints to be operational this week, staffed by provincial employees,” said Schuler. “Drivers can expect to see roadside signage to help direct them to the checkpoints and support traffic safety.”

These checkpoints are established under the authority of The Public Health Act. No one will be denied entry into Manitoba at these locations.

Anyone returning from international or domestic travel should self-isolate and monitor for symptoms for 14 days.

This recommendation does not include:

•    the commercial transportation of goods;

•    workers who live in a neighbouring jurisdiction and travel to Manitoba for work;

•    health care workers who travel to work from outside the province; and

•    normal personal travel in border communities including visits to a cottage.

The province encourages all Manitobans to engage in social distancing. Practice the 3P’s – protect yourself, protect your loved ones and protect your community.  For more information, visit www.manitoba.ca/covid19.

 

© Virden Empire-Advance