The Thompson Local News

Province announces second COVID-19 related death in MB, northern cases remain at two

Manitoba Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin has released the latest COVID-19 numbers.

 

He reports 15 new cases bringing the total to 182 adding they’re also announcing the second death related to COVID-19 bringing the total number of deaths to two.

 

He notes as of this morning 9 individuals are hospitalized, of that 6 are in intensive care and their reports indicate 11 individuals listed as recovered.

 

As well yesterday 634 tests were performed at Cadham Provincial Lab bringing the total number of completed test to 11,952.

 

There are still two confirmed cases in the north.

 

With cases being found in Manitoba communities Roussin again asks all Manitobans to continue to take precautions in all their activities most importantly stay home.

MB Hydro Keeyask construction site continues to operate during public health order

Manitoba Hydro says they’re complying with the latest recommendations at the Keeyask Construction Site, which will continue to operate during the two-week provincial health order that went into effect Apr. 1.

 

A spokesperson for the crown corporation states Manitoba Hydro reduced the number of employees at the site a few weeks ago, with the number of volunteers who stayed on the job is estimated at around 700 workers, which is nearly half the the staff normally at the site.

 

The company adds that there will be limited exceptions for key employees entering Keeyask in the next four to eight weeks of travel suspensions, as anyone arriving at the site without approval will be turned away.

 

Manitoba Hydro says other measures also implemented at Keeyask include enhanced cleaning protocols and distributing printed reminders around the camp, offices, and the work trailers detailing proper recommended personal hygiene practices. They also stated that they're enforcing two-metre physical distancing by closing the gym and ending intramural activities, closing the on-site theatre, and providing only take-out meals from the dining hall.

 

Material and supply deliveries will continue at the site to make sure employees can continue to work and have what they need. The spokesperson says strict measures are being enforced to ensure minimal contact between drivers and on-site staff. Both the north and south access roads remain accessible via vehicle, but the manned gate stations remain in place, restricting travel to and from the site.

 

The spokesperson explains that as of Mar. 21, all individuals referred off-site are being tested for COVID-19 before leaving Keeyask. Before Mar. 21, whether the people removed from the site received a COVID-19 test was up to medical staff in their home communities.

 

As of Apr. 1, the Manitoba Hydro says there are no confirmed or presumptive cases at the site.

 

The province-wide health order was issued by Manitoba's Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin, which lasts from Apr. 1-14.

UCN's 4th-year BN and DPN students helping northern hospitals, testing sites amidst COVID-19 outbreak

Some of University College of the North’s Faculty of Health students are helping medical staff amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Vicki Zeran, the Dean of the faculty at UCN, says the roughly 14 students who volunteered to help are comprised of the fourth-year students in the Bachelor of Nursing program in Thompson and The Pas and some students in the Diploma in Practical Nursing program in Swan River.

 

Zeran explains that the students are helping people who are entering the hospitals and testing sites. She goes on to say that some of those hours will count towards their community clinical practicum.

 

When asked about how the volunteers are feeling about this situation, Zeran says a majority of the students are feeling good and that this is a good learning experience. She did say that some students were fearful, but adds that staff at the Health Faculty have had discussions with them about professional responsibility and how they can protect themselves while volunteering.

 

She adds that pandemic response is covered in the curriculum.

 

Listen in to Thompson Today at 12:40 and 5:10 this afternoon for the full interview.

IIU determines Thompson RCMP officer didn't use excessive force during arrest of teenager

The province’s police watchdog investigation surmises that a Thompson RCMP officer who arrested a 16-year-old female, who was injured during her arrest, did not use excessive force.

 

The incident in question took place last October, when Thompson RCMP was called to a possible domestic disturbance.

 

Upon arriving at the scene, officers tried to take the teen into custody, but she became uncooperative and force was used to arrest her.

 

The suspect was later released, and a few days later, the 16-year-old went to the Thompson General Hospital, where she was diagnosed with a dislocated right shoulder and a fractured right wrist.

 

A fractured wrist is defined as a serious injury under the Independent Investigation Unit regulations, which mandated the organization look into the incident.

 

In his report, IIU Civilian Director Zane Tessler wrote he was satisfied that the injury didn’t represent a serious injury, and that the arresting officer acted within authority and within reasonable limits.

Missing 14-year-old teen located

UPDATE: Janie Captain has been found safe and sound. Thompson RCMP thank the public for their assistance.

 

The Thompson RCMP is asking the public to be on the look-out for a missing teenaged girl.

 

14-year-old Janie Captian was reported missing to local authories on Mar. 25, and the last time she was seen was at approximately 5:30 p.m. on Beaver Crescent the same day.

 

Captain is described as being 5'7" with brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a green jacket, gray hoodie, gray leggings, and black runners.

 

Anyone with information on Captain's whereabouts is asked to contact the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted online at www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.

Manitoba schools to stay closed longer due to COVID-19 concerns

 

WINNIPEG - The Manitoba government is closing elementary, junior high and high schools indefinitely due to COVID-19 concerns.

 

The province originally planned a three-week shutdown that was to end April 13, but Education Minister Kelvin Goertzen says schools will stay closed for the remainder of the school year unless health officials say they can be reopened.

 

Goertzen says assignments and learning are to continue as teachers work remotely.

 

The government on Monday announced the closure of non-essential businesses - including bars, salons and many retail stores - starting on Wednesday and lasting until at least April 14.

 

There are many exemptions to the forced closures including grocery and liquor stores, gas stations, banks, manufacturers, agricultural operations and public transit.

 

Manitoba has recorded 96 confirmed or probable COVID-19 cases so far, and health officials expect the numbers will continue to climb.

New business closures in Manitoba aimed at slowing COVID-19 spread

WINNIPEG - The Manitoba government is forcing non-essential businesses to shut down to try to slow the spread of COVID-19.

 

Starting Wednesday, salons, spas, bars and other establishments are to be closed.

 

Restaurants will be allowed to remain open for takeout or delivery only.

 

The closures do not affect health-care facilities, government services, banks, gas stations, manufacturers, liquor stores and other institutions.

 

The measures are similar to those already in place in some provinces and are in place until at least April 14.

 

Premier Brian Pallister says it was not an easy decision, but the move is an important step to battle the novel coronavirus.

 

The government also announced 24 news cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing the total to 96.

Missing 15-year-old girl found safe

UPDATE: Jersey Moose has been found safe and sound.

 

Police are looking for a missing teenage girl from Thompson.

 

15-year-old Jersey Zander Moose was reported missing to the Thompson detachment Mar. 24.

 

Moose was last confirmed to be seen on Mar. 23 at 7 p.m. on Hudson Bay.

 

She is described as being approximately five feet tall, having a slim build and shoulder length brown hair.

 

Anyone with information on Moose’s whereabouts is asked to contact the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

More restrictions in Manitoba as first death related to COVID-19

WINNIPEG - The Manitoba government is reporting its first death related to COVID-19 and is reducing the size of public gatherings to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

 

Dr. Brent Roussin, chief public health officer, says a woman in her 60s who was in intensive care earlier this week has died.

 

Roussin also says there are three additional cases of COVID-19 in the province, bringing the total to 39.

 

Starting Monday, gatherings are to be capped at 10 people, down from the current 50.

 

Health officials say the ban will apply to church services, weddings and other events.

 

It does not include health facilities, child-care centres and homeless shelters, but officials say social distancing must be observed.

RCMP looking for witnesses in impaired driver incident

The Thompson RCMP is looking for witnesses regarding an impaired driving incident from earlier this week.

 

On the night of Mar. 25 just before 9 p.m, officers were on patrol on Cree Road when they saw a black Ford Escape SUV parked on top of a snow bank near the St. Lawrence Catholic Church.

 

Upon further investigation, police determined the driver, a 60-year-old man from Gods Lake Narrows, was impaired by alcohol. The driver provided breath samples more than twice the legal limit, and was released to appear in church at a later date.

 

Anyone who witnessed this black Ford Escape SUV driving on Cree Road on Mar. 25 is asked to call the Thompson RCMP at 204-677-6909 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Police looking for two suspects in attempted armed robbery of pizza delivery driver

Police are looking for two suspects in an attempted armed robbery.

 

Thompson RCMP received the report at 2:43 a.m. on Mar. 26of two men who pulled a knife on a pizza delivery driver in the Walmart parking lot.

 

One of the males attempted to steal and drive the delivery driver’s car but could not operate the vehicle.

 

The suspects fled on foot as police responded and were later seen by police running inside the Forest View Suites South Tower, but further patrols did not result in any arrests.

 

The delivery driver was uninjured and their car wasn’t damaged.

 

Both suspects were reported to be around 16 to 17 years old and have a slim build, weighing 130 pounds and being between 5'7" and 6 feet tall. Both were reported to be wearing a black jacket and pants.

 

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted online at www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.

RCMP seeking help finding missing Thompson man last seen near Stonewall

The Thompson RCMP are seeking the public's assistance in locating 42 year-old Jimmy Joseph Bauer of Thompson.

 

Bauer was reported missing to the Thompson RCMP on Sunday, Mar. 22 after not being seen in Thompson since Tuesday, Mar. 17. However, Bauer has been seen near Stonewall, Manitoba on Thursday, Mar. 19 driving a white 2003 GMC Sierra, which is missing the tailgate latch with Manitoba License Plate HJS 512.

 

Bauer is described as being approximately 170 cm (5'7) and approximately 235 lbs with brown hair and blue eyes.

 

There is a concern for Bauer's welfare and the RCMP are seeking to confirm his whereabouts. Anyone with information on Bauer's whereabouts is asked to contact the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted online at www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.

19-year-old Thompson man to appear in court following stabbing

A 19-year-old Thompson man has been arrested and charged after allegedly stabbing another man multiple times.

 

RCMP was dispatched to the scene of the crime on Mar. 20 at 11 p.m. at Station Road.

 

Officers found the victim, who was taken to the Thompson General Hospital. He was later transported to the Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre in critical condition.

 

Sunil Tiger Oman was arrested near the scene of the stabbing and faces multiple charges, namely assault. The suspect was taken into custody and will appear in court later today.

 

The victim remains hospitalized in stable condition.

Vale following recommendations of government, health officials as province declares a state of emergency

Vale says it is closely following the recommendations of health authorities to ensure the safety of its employees during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

The mining company explains that it’s taking all necessary measures to support the prevention of the virus at its sites since late January.

 

Franco Cazzola, the Head of Manitoba Operations, states in a letter to community stakeholders that Pandemic Coordinators have been assigned at each site to make sure accurate and up to date information is shared to all employees.

 

General measures involve cancelling non-essential business travel internationally or domestically, allowing employees who can work from home to do so, having on-site employees practice social distancing, and not permitting non-critical contractors on site. Cazzola adds that the company is in the process of setting up screening for all individuals prior to entering the site.

 

As for their operating plants, Cazolla says the steps they've implemented steps that comprise of setting up staggered lunch breaks, avioding large meetings in favour of other means of communication to promote social isolation, and providing employees symptom checklist cards for self-assessment.

 

Another measure instituted was a respirator policy on cage where social distancing is a challenge.

 

Cazzola notes all Vale employees currently have their own respirator, and that this measure doesn't increase the demand of repirators at their operation.

 

Manitoba government declares state of emergency due to COVID-19 pandemic

WINNIPEG - Manitoba has declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Premier Brian Pallister says it was not an easy decision, but the declaration is necessary to protect the health and safety of all Manitobans.

 

It puts new measures in place that limit pubic gatherings to no more than 50 people, including at places of worship, restaurants and bars.

 

Several other provinces have also declared states of emergency. Pallister says Manitobans have been doing well and practising social distancing.

 

As of Thursday, there were 17 cases of the novel coronavirus in the province.

Ashton calls on federal government and employers to do more for northern Manitoba workers amid COVID-19

MP Niki Ashton is calling on the federal government to take more measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in northern Manitoba workplaces.

 

Ashton says Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller needs to address three key issues to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the north. Those are having broader access to testing sites in the region, addressing the need for equipment, and infrastructure for self-isolation.

 

Ashton also touched on the report by a Winnipeg newspaper that Manitoba Hydro has flown at least five possibly symptomatic employees out of the Keeyask construction site as a precaution, which has surrounding First Nations communities calling for construction to be suspended.

 

"What we're hearing from government now is that we shouldn't be involved in gatherings of more than 50 people. Keeyask is an inclosed living space of 1, 300 people. People that are travelling from across the country."

 

She adds that this isn't the time to give the benefit of a doubt, saying "because five people are shipped out, everything is okay".

 

A press release from Manitoba Hydro has stated that they are scaling back work and have suspended travel in and out of the Keeyask site, which is to be completed by Mar. 21. The company adds that for employees who remain at Keeyask, it is continuing to follow the measures outlined by the provincial and federal governments and the World health Organization.

 

For the full interview with Ashton, tune in to Thompson Today at 12:40 and 5:10 this afternoon.

MKO recommends no gathers of 10 or more people on First Nations as COVID-19 continues to spread

Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak has introduced additional recommendations to address the needs of northern First Nations communities as the spread of COVID-19 persists.

 

MKO’s Lead Medical Official, Doctor Barry Lavellee, says one of the measures will be to limit gatherings that have more than ten people.

 

Lavellee adds that MKO is taking a family-based approach when it comes to the social distancing and self-isolating strategies.

 

"One of the things we're really emphasizing with our chiefs and our leaders and our health directors is this concept of social distancing, and what does that mean if you live in a house of twelve or thirteen people and there are not a lot of buildings... in the community."

 

He goes on to elaborate, saying "if a couple of people are ill in the home, that would be a family isolation, getting the families to work together in that context".

 

Lavellee also recommended special measures for the older population, such as designated grocery times for the elderly, workplaces implementing measures to protect employees aged 50 and over, and protection of elders and personal care homes, which include limited or no visitation.

 

Should testing sites for COVID-19 begin operating in First Nations communities, Lavellee says they should not be done at nursing stations or health centres.

 

"We want testing to be done in alternative spaces across our 26 First Nations communities. We do not want tetsing done at nursing stations because we are not sure at the point if somebody who comes in indeed has COVID virus, goes into a small nursing station with two or three nurses and exposure occur in our community and our workforce."

 

Lavellee goes on to say MKO is working "very quickly" with the government to find resources and access to testing that are alternatives.

 

Grand Chief Garrison Settee says MKO has spoken with Northern Store, and prices in the stores have been frozen, and will continue to ensure there is enough inventory of supplies.

 

MKO is also asking hunters to start hunting now to gather meat, and will support the delivery of traditional medicine.

Missing Thompson man found safe

UPDATE: Glendon Hart has been located safe and sound.
 
The Thompson RCMP are seeking the public's assistance in locating 38 year-old Glendon John Hart of Thompson.  
 
Hart was reported missing to the Thompson RCMP on Sunday, March 16th, 2020.  He was last seen near the City Centre Mall in Thompson the afternoon of March 16th, 2020. 
 
Hart is described as being 6'0 and 220 lbs with a black moustache and having black hair in a ponytail.  He was last seen wearing a Winnipeg Jets hat, a camouflage jacket and beige pants.
 
There is a concern for Hart's welfare and the RCMP are seeking to confirm his whereabouts.  Anyone with information on Hart's whereabouts is asked to contact the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted online at www.maniobacrimestoppers.com.

RCMP looking for missing 15-year-old girl

The Thompson RCMP are seeking the public's assistance in locating 15 year-old Jersey Zander Moose of Thompson. 
 
Moose was last seen near Hudson Bay in Thompson the evening of March 11th, 2020. 
 
Moose is described as being 5'3" and 115 pounds with a thin build and having black hair and brown eyes.
 
Anyone with information on Moose's whereabouts is asked to contact the Thompson RCMP at 677-6909 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted online at www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.

Local police looking for info regarding activities of man prior to his death from exposure

Local authorities are looking for information about the activities of man prior to his death, which was due to exposure.

 

Thompson RCMP are investigating the death of Gods River resident, 21-year-old Preston Yellowback, who was found unresponsive by officers on March 8th after reporting he was in medical distress.

 

Police believe Yellowback was at a house party located on Juniper Drive between 2:15 a.m. to 3 a.m. hours before his death.

 

Anyone with information on his activities on March 8th is asked to call Thompson RCMP at 204-677-6909, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477, or secure tip online at www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.

COVID-19 testing site now open in Thompson

The Northern Health Region has set up a testing site in Thompson in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

The testing site is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Thompson Clinic in the Plaza Mall.

 

The testing site is for patients with a referral only, and anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms are urged to contact Health Links at 1-888-315-9257 for a referral.

 

This is the first testing site in Manitoba located outside of Winnipeg, which so far has seven cases of COVID-19.

 

The NRHA says The Pas and Flin Flon will also have testing sites available in their communities, hopefully in the next day or so.

City of Thompson closes facilities in response to COVID-19

All City of Thompson facilities are closed as of 1:15 this afternoon.

 

This includes the TRCC, City Hall, and the Public Works offices, and the closures will be re-evaluated after 30 days.

 

The city is currently working on a plan for the Waste Disposal Grounds to try and preserve public access while protecting staff from exposure.

 

The city says business at City Hall and the Public works office will continue, and the secure drop-box for mail and paperwork submissions will be set up at the front door of city hall.

 

Council meetings are close to the public at this time and gym memberships and other cancelled registrations are being re-evaluated, and pass-holders will be contacted in the coming days.

 

More information on COVID-19 and the city’s actions can be found on the City of Thompson's website.

Missing man found safe and sound

The Thompson RCMP were seeking the public's help in locating a missing man.

 

46-year-old Peter Arthur Duck was last seen near Ashberry Place in Thompson  on the evening of Tuesday, March 10

 

Duck is described as being 5'9" with a medium build and short black hair.

 

He was found safe and sound on Monday.  

 

The Thompson RCMP thank the public for their help in locating Duck.

 

 

Thompson RCMP suspend civilian criminal record checks, fingerprinting indefinitely due to coronavirus

The Thompson RCMP detachment have announced that their general services will be suspended until further notice, due to the current novel coronavirus outbreak.

 

This will include the suspension of civillian criminal record checks and civillian fingerprinting.

 

This comes after Manitoba announced three presumptive cases of COVID-19, with multiple events and venues across the globe postponing or cancelling to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

City of Wolverhampton, England gifts wolf statue to Thompson

Spirit Way hosted a ceremony yesterday afternoon to unveil a special gift from the City of Wolverhampton, England.

 

The gift in question was a wolf statue, called “Beanstalk” by artist Navkiran Klare, which was a part of a public art exhibition called “Wolves in Wolves” in the English city in 2017, akin to the Spirit Way Wolves scattered around Thompson.

 

Two of the 30 wolf statues were painted by local artist Jasyn Lucas, which were sponsored by Spirit Way and Travel Manitoba.

 

Deputy Mayor Les Ellsworth and City Councillor Duncan Wong unveiled the wolf statue at the ceremony, which was held at the airport.

 

The Wolverhampton wolf statue will be displayed in the new airport terminal, which is set to begin construction this spring.

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