GOC Daily Operations Brief

As of 07:00 EDT 23 Mar 2020


CLASSIFIED ADDENDUM: There is no classified addendum today.


Current Conditions

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This map, created by Environment and Climate Change Canada, shows evening weather conditions across the country.

Whitehorse: partly cloudy and -7°

Victoria: partly cloudy and 6°

Vancouver: light rain and 6°

Prince George: light snow and 0°

Edmonton: -1°

Calgary: partly cloudy and -4°

Saskatoon: clear skies and-6°

Regina: partly cloudy and -5°

Winnipeg: clear skies and -5°

Thunder Bay: Cloudy skies and -1°

Toronto: Light snow and 0°

Ottawa: Cloudy and -6°

Montreal: Partly cloudy and -4°

Quebec: Partly cloudy and -13°

Fredericton: Clear skies and -16°

Halifax: Clear skies and -9°

Charlottetown: Partly cloudy and -10°

St. John’s: Sunny and -9°

Yellowknife: Light snow and -9°

Iqaluit: Partly cloudy and -15°

Significant Weather

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This map produced by Environment and Climate Change Canada shows the significant weather events across Canada. Shown are blizzard conditions over parts of Northwest Territories and Nunavut, winds off the Northern tip of Labrador and over the Atlantic east of Nova Scotia, snowy conditions over northern Quebec, central Saskatchewan, and western Alberta. There is also rain shown off the east coast of Nova Scotia.


(Source: Canadian Meteorological Centre, ECCC)

National Overview:

Strong winds, combined with light snow, may result in blizzard conditions over the coast of extreme northern Labrador and eastern Ungava Bay.

Strong winds are forecast to develop over Hudson Bay, bringing blizzard condition to western Hudson Bay and NU. These will spread along eastern Hudson Bay and into northern QC. Some communities along eastern Hudson Bay may receive heavy flurries, resulting in high amounts of snow over the area. Strong winds and light snow may bring blowing snow or blizzard conditions to extreme northern QC. Blizzard conditions are forecast for parts of the western Arctic Archipelago and coastal mainland NT. Significant snow is forecast along eastern BC and the AB foothills this morning; spreading into central SK. A system developing along the US East Coast today will track towards NS waters and may bring significant rain on the morning of 24 Mar to southwestern NS. Strong winds are also expected over the area and also across southern/southwestern NS waters. Southern QC may receive 1-2 cm of snow north of this system, starting near noon today and continuing into the evening.

Significant Weather (Next 24 Hours):

Atlantic Canada: Blizzard conditions over extreme northern Labrador.

ON/QC: Strong winds will bring local blizzard conditions over the extreme northern coast of Quebec and in and Ungava Bay.

Prairies: Significant snow over western AB and central SK. BC: Significant snow over eastern BC/Rockies.

Arctic: Blizzard conditions for parts of the western Arctic Archipelago and coastal mainland NT.

Significant Weather Outlook (Next 2-5 Days):

Heavy snow and possible blowing snow is forecast for parts of southern Newfoundland/Cape Breton Island for the evening of 24 Mar. Significant rainfall is

SK/northern MB/far northern ON on 24 Mar and then extreme northern QC on 25 Mar. Heavy snow/blowing snow is possible over parts of the eastern Maritimes on 26 Mar; spreading northward into the eastern Lower North Shore QC and Labrador by 27 Mar. Significant rainfall is likely across parts of Newfoundland on 27 Mar.


North Atlantic: Nothing significant to report.

Eastern Pacific: Nothing significant to report.

No map will be provided when there is nothing to report.



(Source: Natural Resources Canada)

There are no major storm conditions anticipated. No map will be provided when there is nothing significant to report.

See the Canadian Space Weather Forecast Centre website for current information: http://www.spaceweather.gc.ca (updated every 15 minutes).



Incident Map

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This map produced by the Government Operations Centre shows the Events and Incidents of Interest across Canada and around the world. There is an indication of Covid-19 in China, and many statistical counts of Covid-19 cases across Canada. Those numbers are as follows:

Yukon has 2 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

Northwest Territories has 1 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

BC has 424 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

Alberta has 259 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

Saskatchewan has 33 confirmed cases and 19 probable cases

Manitoba has 11 confirmed cases and 9 probable cases

Ontario has 412 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

Quebec has 219 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

New Brunswick has 8 confirmed cases and 9 probable cases

Nova Scotia has 28 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

PEI  has 3 confirmed cases and 0 probable cases

Newfoundland and Labrador has 3 confirmed cases and 6 probable cases

No statistics were shown for Nunavut.

00360-20 Emergence of COVID-19 – Update:

The Health Portfolio Operations Centre (HPOC) remains at Level 3 - Partial Escalation to further support effective coordination of federal, provincial and territorial preparedness and respond to the emergence of COVID-19. The Health Portfolio Regional Emergency Coordination Centres are activated in all the provinces to support activities related to COVID- 19 and preparedness and detection activities in Canada.


On 11 Mar 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic as there are now cases reported in 167 countries. On 22 Mar, a WHO emergency expert stated lockdowns are not enough to defeat COVID-19 and that additional effort must be made to isolate those that are sick and to find their contacts and isolate them as well.

As of 07:00 EDT, 23 Mar, the number of positive COVID-19 cases globally is 343,421 including 14,790 deaths with 100,165 individuals having recovered. There are a total of 11,491 deaths outside of China. Five countries (Italy, US, Spain, Germany, and Iran) make up 65% of international cases outside of mainland China. The number of cases and deaths for these countries is: Italy (59,138/5,476), US (35,224/471), Spain (29,909/1,813), Germany (26,159/106), and Iran (21,638/1,685).


On 22 Mar as of 18:00 EDT:
Confirmed Cases Probable Cases Resolved Cases Deaths
BC 424 0 6 10
AB 259 0 3 1
SK 33 19 0 0
MB 11 9 0 0
ON 425 0 8 5
QC 221 0 1 4*
NL 3 6 0 0
NB 9 8 0 0
NS 28 0 0 0
PE 3 0 0 0
YT 2 0 0 0
NT 1 0 0 0
Repatriated Canadians 13 0 0 0
Total 1,432 42 18 20

* The number of deaths is lower than that announced on 21 Mar. One of these individuals tested negative

Of the cases for which information is available:

Geographic information system (GIS) Hub on COVID-19 Resources, by Esri Canada: https://resources-covid19canada.hub.arcgis.com

On 22 Mar, the Prime Minister announced that the House of Commons will be recalled on 24 Mar in order to introduce urgent economic measures. He stated that Canada is not at the point where the federal government needs to take emergency measures to force people to stay at home during the COVID-19 outbreak as provinces and local governments are managing the situation.

Open source reported on 22 Mar the Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee will refuse to send athletes to the Tokyo Olympics if the games are not postponed. This event is currently scheduled to begin on 24 Jul.

Repatriation efforts

The Government of Canada is working with Canadian airlines and foreign governments to provide access to commercial flights for Canadian travelers who want to return home. The flights will prioritize stranded travelers who are Canadian citizens, Canadian permanent residents, or immediate family members of Canadian citizens. In addition, only travelers who are asymptomatic will be allowed to board, and all travelers will be asked to self-isolate for 14 days upon entry.

WestJet will be operating 34 flights from international destinations between 23-25 Mar to repatriate Canadians. Air Transat is working at the moment with Global Affairs (GAC) in order to plan flights where the airspace is closed, and thousands of people might be brought back over

1 The number of deaths is lower than that announced on 21 Mar. One of these individuals tested negative

the next few days. Sunwing is offering flight availability for free if their planes have empty seats. Late 21 Mar, 444 Canadians arrived in Montreal from Morocco on a special Air Canada (AC) flight. AC will operate two additional flights from Morocco later in the week.

Minister Champagne confirmed that the more than 800 Canadian travelers stranded in Peru can return home on flights that have been agreed on by the Peruvian government. Minister Champagne has said negotiations are also underway with governments in India, the Philippines and Ecuador to arrange special flights. The Minister spoke with Foreign Ministers in Cuba, Ecuador and Uruguay who have offered to assist Canadian travelers. On 23 Mar, 90 Canadians will be repatriated from Guatemala.

Effective 23 Mar, Singapore will bar entry to all short-term visitors and will no longer allow travellers to enter or transit through Singapore. As of 22 Mar, Vietnam will temporarily ban all foreigners, except for entrants on diplomatic or official purposes or other special cases permitted, from entering the country.

Federal Departments

Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)

PHAC has developed guidance for federal/provincial/territorial public health authorities on the use of public health measures. The Health Minister stated that the federal and provincial governments are looking at ways to standardize public health advice across the country. Public health officials from across the country were to meet 22 Mar to discuss how they can unify Canada's response to the crisis. The Minister stated that the health officials will also be looking at federal standards for testing, surveillance and data provision.

Canada's Chief Medical Health Officer recommended that gatherings of 50 or more people should be avoided. The following two documents can be shared:

Community-based measures to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 in Canada. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus- infection/health-professionals/public-health-measures-mitigate-covid-19.html

Risk-informed decision-making for mass gatherings during COVID-19 global outbreak: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus- infection/health-professionals/mass-gatherings-risk-assesment.html

As of 19 Mar, 83,480 people have been tested for COVID-19 in Canada. Testing volumes vary across the country. At that time, 1,3% (n=1062) were positive.

Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)

As of 21 Mar, Canada and the US will temporarily restrict all non-essential travel across the Canada-US border. Trade, supply chains, and essential works remain open. The measure will be in place for 30 days, at which point it will be reviewed by both parties. The Border Information Service (BIS) is accessible 24 / 7 to respond to traveler queries. As of 18:00 EDT on 21 Mar, over 1,000 calls had been received. Approximately 60% are calls coming in from Canada and 40% from outside the country.

Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC)

As of 22 Mar, PSPC has performed 125 specialized cleaning and disinfections in federal assets in response to presumptive cases of COVID-19, and in prevention of its spread. There are currently 31 ongoing disinfections and 33 requests are pending. A total of 147 assets are impacted.

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)

As of 20 Mar, the federal government has received 500,000 applications for employment insurance, compared to just 27,000 for the same week last year.

Global Affairs Canada (GAC)

As of 20 Mar, GAC is repatriating non-essential service staff from its missions abroad.

Indigenous Service Canada (ISC) / First Nations organizations (FN)

As of 20 Mar, 24 FN communities in ON have declared a State of Local Emergency (SoLE). All FN in QC have activated their emergency measures in response to COVID-19.

In MB, 62 of 63 FN Communities have declared States of Emergency (SOE). Eleven communities in AB have declared SOE/SoLEs. In SK the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations representing 70 FNs declared a SOE. BC has 80 communities that declared SOE/SoLEs. In ON 29 communities declared SOE/SoLEs.

Some FN in AB have set-up monitoring stations on non-major roadways near their communities to sensitize and give information to non-essential people going in and out of the communities. As of 20 Mar, nine FNs in QC (Wemotaci, Ekuanitshit, Manawan, Kitcisakik, Waswanipi, Opitciwan, Listiguj, Oujé-Bougoumou, Nutashkuan) had implemented community access control measures. Thirty FN communities in Atlantic Canada have closed their land borders to limit exposure to the novel coronavirus. Two communities, Miawpukek (NL) and Eskasoni (NS) have declared SoLEs.

Transport Canada (TC)

TC has launched a new website launched to communicate transportation-related measures put in place in response to COVID-19.

Public Safety (PS)

PS Minister said that irregular border crossers are now screened for COVID-19 and placed in 14-day self-isolation if they show symptoms of the coronavirus.



The BC Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre remains activated. There are currently 102 Emergency Operations Centres (EOC) activated, four municipalities declared a State of Local Emergency (SOLE) and there are two Band Council Resolutions. As of 21 Mar, the communities of Tofino and Ucluelet on Vancouver Island are asking visitors to postpone their trips due to limited health resources in the communities. The Chief Medical Officer reported that there are 27 people in hospital, 12 of whom are in intensive care. She said there has also been another death associated with the Lynn Valley long-term care home in North Vancouver. The province is ordering all personal service establishments to close, including salons, spas, and massage and tattoo parlors.


The AB POC is currently at level 4 - Mandatory Full GOA Coordination for a Significant Incident. As of 21 Mar, 35 States of Local Emergency (SOLE’s) have been declared in AB. 62% of cases in AB are in the Calgary zone. The Mayor of Calgary is encouraging anyone who sees an individual or business that is violating orders under the local state of emergency to report it to 311.

On 22 Mar, AB announced that AB Children’s Services is working with child care providers to open up to 15,000 child care spaces to ensure child care is available for those providing services that Albertans rely on during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Woodland Cree FN (between Peace River and Red Earth Creek) has now established two monitoring sites on Highway 986; one to the east and one to the west of the community. The FN has advised they are not blockades and traffic passing through the community will be allowed to continue and traffic entering the community will be subject to community entry protocols.

Ft. McKay FN has established a checkpoint at the entrance to the community to gather information and provide COVID-19 information to those entering the community.


SK PEOC remains at Level 2 – Provincial Response/Provincial EOC activated. The Province is sill under a provincial State of Emergency. The Premier stated anyone returning from outside the country must self-isolate for 14 days and signed an emergency order authorizing police to enforce the measure.


MB Provincial Emergency Operations Centre (PEOC) remains activated to Level 1 (Routine Emergency). On 20 Mar, Premier Pallister declared a state of emergency. As of 23 Mar all public facilities/businesses will be closed with the exception of restaurants able to respect 2m distancing, non- elective dental and optometrist procedures and daycares limited to eight children. Eleven community testing sites throughout the province are open to those who have received referrals.


On 22 Mar, the County of Essex declared a State of Emergency, taking proactive and precautionary measures to prepare the region for the COVID-19 pandemic. The County has seven munipalities in southwestern ON – Amherstburg, Essex, Kingsville, Lakeshore, LaSalle, Leamington and Tecumseh.

The ON Medical Association and the Registered Nurses' Association of ON said there is a large stockpile of masks which have expired but should still be used in lower-risk areas.

In order to support health care and frontline workers during this COVID-19 outbreak, ON announced plans to exempt certain child care centres from the order to close all licensed child care centres pursuant to the state of emergency declared earlier in the week. This initiative is being done in partnership with service system managers and First Nations partners.


The Centre national de coordination gouvernementale of the ministère de la Sécurité publique du Québec remains activated to Level 2. Premier Legault announced that as of 00:00 EDT 22 Mar all shopping centres will be closed until 01 May 2020 with the exception of grocery stores, pharmacies and the Société des alcools du Québec. As well all restaurants and beauty/hair salons will be closed for the same period of time. Take-out services will be allowed to continue and is encouraged.

All schools, colleges, universities and daycares will be closed until 01 May. The QC Education Minister assured students that there are on-line resources available so that they may finish their scholastic year.

QC health authorities are opening a walk-in COVID-19 test clinic in the heart of Montreal's entertainment district on 23 Mar.

The funding terms and conditions specific to VIDOC protection and preparedness measures19 were sent to community emergency measures coordinators on 21 Mar.

Six FN health facilities(Gesgapegiag, Timiskaming, Kanesatake, Odanak, Kitigan Zibi, Listiguj) are closed; however, they are maintaining essential services.


NB Health EOC remains activated to Level 3 (Full Activation). As of 23 Mar the provincial government will have a phone line available, which residents can call if they have concerns about people not complying with the state of emergency orders.


NS Provincial Coordination Center remains activated to Level 1. On 22 Mar the Premier declared a provincial state of emergency due to COVID-19. As 23 Mar, anyone who enters the province will have to self-isolate for 14 days. There are exceptions for people who provide essential services. Groups are limited to a maximum of five people. Police are being given the power to enforce social distancing with $1,000 fines for individuals and $7,500 fines for businesses.


PE remains activated the PEOC to Level 2 (Partial Activation). On 21 Mar, the Chief Public Health Officer directed anyone travelling to PE from another province within Canada to self-isolate for 14 days. Assessment centres are now at all entry points to the Island including at the ferry terminal.


NL PEOC remains activated to Level II (partial activation). On 22 Mar, the NL Minister Advanced Education, Skills and Labour, announced the temporary suspension of the repayment of the provincial portion of Canada Student Loans for a period of six months. The Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development announced the Provincial Government will provide funding to regulated child care centres and family child care homes at the child care subsidy program rates for all licensed spaces.


On 18 Mar, the YT Chief Medical Officer declared a public health emergency in the territory. On 22 Mar, the Chief Medical Officer for the Territory confirmed in a news conference there are now two confirmed cases in the territory. Both individuals had travelled to the US; however, upon returning self-isolated in order to avoid contact with others.


NT Chief Public Health Officer issued an order effective 21 Mar prohibiting all travel (by air, land and port) into the territory, with limited exceptions, to combat COVID-19. NT reported its first case of COVID-19 from an individual who had travelled to BC and AB.


On 18 Mar, the NU Minister of Health declared a public health emergency in the territory.

Current Issues

On 10 Mar, a plane chartered by the Government of Canada arrived at CFB Trenton carrying 237 passengers from the Grand Princess cruise ship. As of 20 Mar, 13 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed among cruise ship returnees currently quarantined at CFB Trenton.

Risk Assessment

Canada remains in close contact with the World Health Organization (WHO) to assess the situation and any potential risk to Canadians. PHAC has assessed the public health risk associated with COVID-19 as low for the general population in Canada but this could change rapidly. There is an increased risk of more severe outcomes for Canadians aged 65 and over, with compromised immune systems, and with underlying medical conditions. The US Center for Disease Control study published 17 Mar found that younger people can develop serious illness requiring hospitalization, up to 20% of hospitalizations are between the ages of 20 to 54 years old.

The Government Operations Centre is convening teleconferences with relevant federal partners to share information, identify and address issues, and support ongoing coordination of activities. The GOC remains at Level 3 – Coordination of Federal Response. (Sources: PHAC, CBSA, CAF/Department of National Defence, GAC, Johns Hopkins University, BC Centre for Disease Control, ON Ministry of Health, NB Emergency Management Organizations, Canadian Red Cross, open sources)


Nothing significant to report.


Nothing significant to report.


Nothing significant to report.


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