NOTICE COVID 19 UPDATE ACC VANCOUVER
UPDATE Tuesday June 16, 2020
Hi ACC Vancouver Section Members,
On behalf of the ACC Vancouver Section Executive I am writing to bring our section members up to date with recent changes. The Executive recently met through Zoom and considering the implications of the provincial health guidelines, our National Office direction and BC Parks, we have reached the following decisions:
Trips leaders are now welcome and encouraged to offer trips for a maximum of 6 people. Leaders and participants are expected to follow the provincial health guidelines and are to refer to our website for further advice on how to do this.
- Please note that the new waiver on our website includes reference to COVID-19.
- Courses and Skills – Our normally run Section courses did not run for the usual May timeframe. We may be looking at end of summer courses or a clinic format focusing on the upcoming fall/winter activities.
- We will offer courses in conjunction with ACMG Guide Monte Johnson. Over the last 5 months, Monte has been helping the Vancouver Section develop a leadership training giveback program which had to be put on hold due to COVID and a decrease in our projected funds to supplement it. It will be revisited as we move into the fall/winter as our programs hopefully open up generating some income for a roll out next season.
The selection of courses being offered to our Vancouver membership is posted to our Calendar. The ACMG has developed best practices protocol which our National office has adapted and is following as will our Section. Please go to the website and look at the calendar for the courses being offered. http://www.accvancouver.org/
- Vancouver Section Huts – Tantalus at Lake Lovely Water, Haberl are moving towards a July 1, 2020 opening with new guidelines to be in place from July 1, 2020 to Sept 30, 2020. The new guidelines can be found on the accvancouver.ca website then click on Huts. The guidelines must be followed, and the booking form filled out in full or the booking will not take place and will be discarded. Bookings will commence as outlined on the website on June 21.
ACC huts are for accommodation purposes. The Alpine club of Canada is not responsible for any damages, injures, or other that may occur as a result of their use.
- Virtual Socials will be brought to the attention of Section members with details of each event in the week preceding or sooner if possible. We will try to make some happen and look forward to these opportunities for connection,
We will of course keep the membership updated with any changes. Check back to the website accvancouver.ca on Mondays for these updates. Although it is not the usual slate of summer activities by any means, we can now look forward to opportunities to get out in the mountains together in small groups. Please consider offering to lead a trip for our schedule.
PLEASE SEE FULL RESTART GUIDELINES BELOW
Thanks for all your understanding in this time of ongoing adjustments.
Anna Milino, ACC Vancouver Section Chair
RESTART GUIDELINES – ACC VANCOUVER SECTION
With the generous help of both the BCMC (BC Mountaineering Club), the NSH (North Shore Hikers), our National office, information from FMCBC, ACMG and members of the ACC Vancouver Section, this document has been written as guidance for our Vancouver Section Members. Our Members who also belong to the BCMC and NSH will find this helpful and recognizable.
The opening of the ACC Vancouver Section will begin on June 19th, 2020. The described plan will run until updated in accordance with any changes around the Provincial Health Officer (PHO) COVID guidelines. The following requirements for all trips and activities on the ACC Vancouver calendar are applicable to all ACC Vancouver Section members and are based upon PHO guidelines and our National Office. The requirements will be updated as the BC PHO guidelines change and become available.
As provincial guidelines permit, the Vancouver Section will gradually return to as close to normal as possible, but in reality, this could take a long time.
The ACC Vancouver expects all members participating in Vancouver Section trips or activities to comply with the requirements and guidelines below. Refer to the links throughout the body of this document and provided near the end of the document.
Huts will reopen July 1, 2020 should all new requirements be met. Refer to the accvancouver.ca website and click on Huts for the updated guidelines and how to book http://accvancouver.ca/huts-operated-by-the-vancouver-section/
Collaborative Courses with ACMG guide Monte Johnson and our Director and Co-director of courses and skills will be posted to our Calendar for these to start up June 26th for our Vancouver Section members. There is an associated cost for the courses at a reduced rate. Go to http://www.accvancouver.org/ for the calendar and to sign up.
Our usual May courses could not run due to Covid. End of the summer Section course/clinics with a fall/winter slant to it may take place. Check for updates on this on the website.
- Trips will resume June 19th, 2020 following the below guidelines
- No interprovincial travel is recommended until further notice
- No cross-border travel between Canada and the United States is recommended until further notice (border is currently closed to non-essential travel)
- Indigenous communities, territories and lands that are not open to visitors – do not enter unless invited to do so by indigenous peoples
- Follow the guidelines set out by BC health organizations and the BC government
- Activities that can comply with the guidelines set out.
All ACC Vancouver Section activities must be conducted in a safe manner, minimizing risks to participants and others.
- Maximum group size of 6 people (exception: online events)
- Participants must be ACC Vancouver Section members and sign up through ical – no guests
- Participants must bring a pen and filled out waiver and Health declaration to be signed in front of the leader. Please be aware the leader has the right to decline your participation
- Declaration of Health
- No carpooling with non-household members or people not within exclusive “social bubbles”
activities requiring shared gear (i.e. ropes, climbing hardware etc) please follow the ACMG guidelines/National office guidelines. (unless same household or bubble groups) ACMG checklist
Please note any Club gear used (ie. ropes or other) must be cleaned between groups using them or rested for 72 hours between use.
- No trips in or through closed parks
- No sharing of food, beverage or serving utensils with people outside your exclusive “social bubble”
- No sharing of tents with non-household members or people not within exclusive “social bubbles”
- Comply with any travel restrictions from government and any community announcements
- Leaders and participants must supply their own masks and hand sanitizer
- Health declaration and new ACC waiver must be signed in front of the leader/organizer on day of event
Participant Requirements (Organizers and Attendees)
- Must be self-reliant on trips
- No unnecessary touching! No handshakes, hugs, fist or elbow bumping (share smiles, waves and hang tens)
- Maintain at least 2m distance from other trip participants and other trail users. If this is not possible please use a mask and proper hand sanitizing, with exception to same household members and groups of exclusive non-household members (exclusive “social bubbles”)
- Must pass all health and safety requirements to participate (reference the health and safety requirements below)
- Have an exit plan in the event that you or someone becomes ill during the trip or event
- If you become ill during or up to 14 days after a trip / event you must notify the trip leader and the ACC Vancouver at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow the BC CDC’s instructions
Health and Safety Requirements
- All trip participants must answer and pass the health and safety questions (outlined below) to be able to participate in an ACC Vancouver Section event
- If you answer “yes” to any of the health and safety questions, you cannot organize or attend the trip / event
- The trip / event Organizer has the right to decline sign up / attendance requests
- Keep it clean! You must bring your own hand sanitizer and masks and use them when applicable; avoid touching your face
- Wear a mask when appropriate to provide additional protection to others and sneeze / cough into your elbow
Health and Safety Questions
Organizers and attendees please use the BC Covid-19 Self-Assessment Tool when posting or signing up for any activity on the ACC Vancouver calendar (with the exception of online events) and before signing the Health declaration Declaration of Health
in front of the leader on the day of the event. Include the questionnaire link in your calendar posting for participants to access. Organizers and Participants must answer no to all of the questions in order to participate. The updated waiver must also be signed In front of the leader/organizer.
Pre-Departure Organizer Health and Safety Requirements
A health and safety check must be done on the day of the trip / event prior to departure with organizers and attendees confirming with their group that they have completed and answered “no” to all questions in the BC Covid-19 Symptom Self Assessment Tool questionnair e
- complete and sign the health declaration and the updated ACC waiver in front of the leader
- Organizers are to remind everyone that there is to be no carpooling with the exception of members of the same household, or people within exclusive “social bubbles” unless wearing masks and the use of hand sanitizer
- Tone it down! Do trips of lesser difficulty than you normally would to help reduce the risk of mishaps, to help protect SAR members and to not risk burdening hospitals
- Choose trails, routes and destinations that can easily accommodate physical distancing
- Be mindful of how much (or little) parking is available at the chosen trailhead, and give consideration that there may be less carpooling than normal taking place with your group and other parties
- Arrange logistics ahead of the trip / event with the trip/event organizer to minimize congregation time at the meeting spot
- Minimize the impacts of travel as much as possible: be self-contained in terms of supplies – don’t stop at facilities outside your own community for gas, food, or bathroom breaks unless necessary and follow hand sanitizing/masks and social distancing when possible if this situation arises
- Be mindful that public restrooms and other facilities may not be available at trailheads; bring blue / wag bags as a backup
- Practise ‘Leave No Trace’ and pack out what you bring in
- Bring the “Essentials” For more preparation info check the AdventureSmart app
- Allow for extra time throughout your trip / event, especially during snack and lunch breaks, for thorough hygiene practices
- BC Government Restart Plan
- BC Centre for Disease Control COVID-19 guidelines and recommendations mask use
- BC Parks COVID-19 response information
- BC Search and Rescue Association COVID-19 safety recommendations
- Metro Vancouver Regional Parks Covid-19 response information
- follow the BC CDC’s instructions
- wearing a mask
- AdventureSmart app
- http://www.accvancouver.org/ for the calendar
- Declaration of Health
- ACMG checklist
The following is a (modified) post from Matt Gunn, moderator of South Coast Touring Facebook group. It is equally applicable to the Alpine Club activities:
British Columbia has recently entered Phase 3 of BC’s Restart Plan and people are eager to get back into the mountains. The Provincial Health Officer, Bonnie Henry, advocates getting outside and enjoying outdoor activities. That does not mean that we can go back to doing everything the same as we did a few months ago.
We recognize the Search and Rescue context is very different at this time. SAR volunteers will be following health protocols that impact search responses:
- When appropriate, SAR response may be limited to providing information and equipment so that groups can self-rescue.
- SAR response time may be significantly delayed due to COVID protocols and limited resources.
- Next day rescue may be a reality – be prepared to remain in the field overnight.
- It is possible that only injured individual will be evacuated, remaining group members may need to make their own way home.
- If you might need SAR, even just for advice, call early rather than waiting until late in the day. The earlier SAR is contacted, the more options are available.
We’d like to share mountain travel recommendations we have seen from other groups related to risk management during the pandemic:
- Respect closed areas
- Make conservative decisions regarding terrain selection.
- Keep the difficulty level low and stay well within your abilities.
- Keep your mountain activity to your local community.
- Avoid stopping in smaller communities and towns
- Ensure that physical distancing measures are still taken when applicable.
- Do not carpool with people outside your ‘bubble’
- Do not share equipment with people outside your ‘bubble’. Unless following ACMG/ACC National office guidelines
- Consider early return times as a buffer for unexpected incidents.
- Be prepared to spend the night out in an emergency.
- Leave a trip plan. For more preparation info check the AdventureSmart app
Be kind, be calm, be safe, have fun!
Please keep checking back for further updates.
Very best regards,
Chair | ACC Vancouver