Elk Falls Suspension Bridge among mid-island tourist attractions closed due to COVID-19
CAMPBELL RIVER -- Popular outdoor recreation spots across the mid-island continue to close over fears about COVID-19.
BC Hydro and BC Parks jointly announced Tuesday that the Elk Falls Suspension Bridge, near Campbell River, and surrounding trails were closed to the public effective Wednesday morning.
BC Hydro spokesperson Stephen Watson says there were concerns over contamination between visitors at the bridge.
"The issue is, there's a lot of handrails, a lot of touch points that people aren't really thinking of,” said Watson. “[You] just naturally try and hold your balance.”
"Even a few cases, [if] we can stop that, that's a goal in the right direction".
Meanwhile, BC Hydro's Discovery Centre closed its doors on March 13 along with washroom facilities at the centre.
The closures also included BC Hydro's Strathcona Dam Campground and BC Parks' Quinsam Campground.
The areas are the latest public locations to close to locals as well as tourists.
Tourism Vancouver Island President and CEO Anthony Everett says operators on the island are understandably concerned.
"This is so unprecedented for the whole world, even in other times of wildfires or SARS or economic downturns, nothing like this has every happened before," said Everett.
He says tourism operators are confident the island will survive the hardship, however.
"We will recover, we will come back strong,” he said.
“We are a world-class destination. Businesses and people want to come here and that's the message. We will get through this.”