Passenger numbers at the Northwest Regional Airport have increased for the fourth straight month after free falling in April.
In August, 14,676 passengers passed through the airport, the highest monthly total since March when the COVID-19 pandemic affected most travel. August’s figure is an increase of nearly 2,000 compared to July, which saw 12,790 passengers.
While the number of travellers is on the rise, the monthly total is still just half the amount of passengers in Aug. 2019. Airport manager Carman Hendry said on August 11 that the increase was encouraging, but there is no guarantee the passenger count will continue to grow into the fall.
“We’re expecting there may be a drop in September or October, according to Dr. Bonnie Henry’s suggestion of a possible second wave,” Hendry said. “Otherwise if there is no second wave I think that we’ll just continue to go up.”
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry issued a warning for British Columbians to “hold the line” as daily case counts continue to average above 100.
The airport continues to ask that people in the terminal building wear a mask. To ensure physical distancing, the airport has closed every second chair in the public seating area, security room and hold room. The eating area is at 40 per cent capacity and non-passengers are encouraged not enter the terminal building.
Common touch points like handrails, push buttons and chair arms are cleaned after each departure.
With files from Katya Slepian