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Author Topic: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins  (Read 2007 times)

ghYHZ

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The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« on: July 04, 2020, 11:33:12 AM »

Until yesterday.....unless you were a trucker or had approval for essential travel......you were not permitted to drive across the border between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia...or take the bridge or ferry to PEI or ferry to Newfoundland.

What they're calling the 'Atlantic Bubble' began July 3 and it allows residents of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland & Labrador to travel within the 4 provinces without having to isolate for 14 days.

Anyone driving across the New Brunswick-Quebec border or coming into the Atlantic Provinces from elsewhere in Canada still has to isolate.

This  lock down on interprovincial travel in the Maritimes and Newfoundland  has been in effect since March and it's seems to have worked. With a pop of 2.5 million the numbers of Covid here are very low. Last new case of Covid on PEI was in April. It's been a month since a case was detected in Newfoundland. New Brunswick currently has 5 active cases......and Nova Scotia: 3.

You are still stopped at the borders and asked for ID to prove you are a resident of the Atlantic Provinces so on the first day there were long line-ups:

https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/traffic-heavy-as-atlantic-provinces-lift-travel-restrictions-within-region-1.5009249
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ghYHZ

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2020, 11:42:54 AM »

As the Charter of Rights guarantees free travel between all provinces and territories there are going to be constitutional challenges. But on the other hand....reading social media....many don't even want that NS-NB border or PEI or NFLD open!

With the Maine Ferry cancelled for this year and the US Border remaining closed for the summer....this is going to at least give local tourism a boost.
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vdeane

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2020, 04:46:58 PM »

I would think it would be possible to enforce things at the perimeter of the zone and at airports rather than have long lines for interior checks.

How does travel between the island of Newfoundland and Labrador work, since such trips have to pass through Québec?
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MikeTheActuary

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2020, 09:36:04 PM »

As the Charter of Rights guarantees free travel between all provinces and territories there are going to be constitutional challenges.

This was addressed by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1954:

Quote
It follows, a fortiori, that a province cannot prevent a Canadian from entering it except, conceivably, in temporary circumstances, for some local reason as, for example, health. With such a prohibitory power, the country could be converted into a number of enclaves and the "union" which the original provinces sought and obtained disrupted. In a like position is a subject of a friendly foreign country; for practical purposes he enjoys all the rights of the citizen.

(Emphasis added)
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MikeTheActuary

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2020, 09:46:06 PM »

How does travel between the island of Newfoundland and Labrador work, since such trips have to pass through Québec?

I don't know for certain, but I suspect that given the nature of geography, a brief exposure to the far-eastern section of QC138 would be forgiven by NL powers-that-be.
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ghYHZ

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2020, 08:47:37 AM »

I would think it would be possible to enforce things at the perimeter of the zone and at airports rather than have long lines for interior checks.

Makes sense but Health is a provincial jurisdiction and each of the four provinces has different requirements for entry.......i.e: PEI requires a form to be completed on line the day prior but Nova Scotia only requires an ID showing an address within the Atlantic Provinces.

And we had some discussion last summer on needing reservations for the PEI Ferry.

https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=25438.msg2434898#msg2434898

I'm going over next week and will be getting one now! Ferries are running at half capacity this season. Passengers are also allowed to remain in their vehicles for the 75 min crossing.....something you couldn't do previously!

How does travel between the island of Newfoundland and Labrador work, since such trips have to pass through Québec?

You are permitted to travel under this agreement.....and it also covers the closely linked communities of Labrador City/Wabush and Fermont/Mount Wright, Quebec: (Note in particular Item 3 in this .PDF)

https://www.gov.nl.ca/covid-19/files/Special-Measures-Order-Labrador-Quebec-Border-Amendments-June-26-2020.pdf

https://lmsi.woodwardgroup.ca/covid-19.html

And a sad development on PEI......yesterday they announced 3 new cases of Covid on the Island. The first since April 28th. These were traced to returning outside travel and not 'Atlantic Bubble' related but you can imagine the social media comments now to just lock the borders down again!

As the Charter of Rights guarantees free travel between all provinces and territories there are going to be constitutional challenges.

This was addressed by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1954:

Thanks for that!
« Last Edit: July 05, 2020, 09:20:43 AM by ghYHZ »
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RobbieL2415

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2020, 09:05:39 AM »

They aren't saying you can't travel. They are saying that if you do travel, you need to quarantine.

Same thing goes in the US. You cannot disallow people from one state entry into another. You can place restrictions on conveyance and meet public health needs, though.
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ghYHZ

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2020, 09:27:47 AM »

They aren't saying you can't travel. They are saying that if you do travel, you need to quarantine.

Yes....but still some have been denied entry:

https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/n-s-woman-denied-right-to-attend-mother-s-funeral-challenges-n-l-travel-ban-1.4948308
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RobbieL2415

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2020, 11:44:19 AM »

They aren't saying you can't travel. They are saying that if you do travel, you need to quarantine.

Yes....but still some have been denied entry:

https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/n-s-woman-denied-right-to-attend-mother-s-funeral-challenges-n-l-travel-ban-1.4948308
I hope she didn't tell the cops she was going to a funeral. The moment they start asking where you're going, just tell them you're gonna remain silent.
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ghYHZ

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2020, 11:47:46 AM »

« Last Edit: July 05, 2020, 11:51:46 AM by ghYHZ »
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vdeane

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2020, 12:17:54 PM »

I would think it would be possible to enforce things at the perimeter of the zone and at airports rather than have long lines for interior checks.

Makes sense but Health is a provincial jurisdiction and each of the four provinces has different requirements for entry.......i.e: PEI requires a form to be completed on line the day prior but Nova Scotia only requires an ID showing an address within the Atlantic Provinces.
Those requirements strike me as overly strict.  Isn't the point of the bubble that the provinces trust each other?  It would seem to me that it would be sufficient to have checkpoints on the perimeter, information sharing on people required to quarantine (feel free to keep cops with license plate readers and/or facial recognition cameras on the borders to catch people who try to violate the rules... just don't make a checkpoint out of it), and freedom of movement for everyone who either doesn't need to quarantine or has already completed their quarantine.  There shouldn't be any difference between a resident of a given province and someone who has already finished a two week quarantine in that province.

Meanwhile in the tri-state coalition of NY/NJ/CT, we don't have checkpoints on our borders, but do spot enforcement based on airline passenger manifests and scanning plates on the road with the threat of VERY hefty fines for anyone caught violating our quarantine requirements.
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AsphaltPlanet

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2020, 01:17:21 PM »

^ A society can't have it both ways.

To effectively stop Covid-19, the mitigation measures need to be fairly draconian.

Ironically, remember how much outrage their was when the government of Florida set up checkpoints on interstates entering their state to try and stop visitors from carrying the covid into their state?  Seems like a century ago.
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vdeane

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2020, 09:42:57 PM »

The only outrage I remember was when Rhode Island was blocking people who lived in New York (and only New York - they didn't even care about people from their own state who were in New York; keep in mind that, by that point, the virus was already in many places that were not New York).  Rhode Island never actually dropped quarantine requirements, but they did eventually change them to something that made more sense.  So the reason for the outrage wasn't that they were asking some people to quarantine upon arrival - it was specifically who they were (and were not) imposing that requirement on.

It makes sense that there are some restrictions, but those restrictions need to be based on actual things that could help curb the virus, not security theater to make people "feel" safe.  The virus does not care where you live or if you have filled out a form.  Someone who has quarantined in New Brunswick for two weeks is effectively no different from someone who actually lives in New Brunswick, so why should they be treated differently?  There is no reason they can't have people on the NB/QC border and at the airports collecting information on all travelers coming from outside (something like "John Doe, born on [date], [insert picture here], from [address], entered on [date] in a [make/model/color car] with a licence plate of [whatever] (or is renting a car, etc.) and is required to quarantine until [date].  They will be quarantining at [address]"), share that information will all other provinces, and then have licence plate readers and facial recognition cameras at the border.  If the traveler is detected, a police officer stationed at the interior provincial border pulls them over, slaps them with a huge fine (I believe NY's is $10000), and does whatever they do to force them back into quarantine (you want draconian?  Throw them into solitary confinement for two weeks from the date of offence, that will teach people not to break quarantine!).

Honestly, if people are clamoring to shut down borders between provinces over three people who arrived from out of the country and are presumably in quarantine and not a threat to anyone, it seem a lot like panic to me.

In short - yes to reasonable restrictions that actually help prevent the spread of the virus, no to security theater.
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oscar

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2020, 10:00:20 PM »

Ironically, remember how much outrage their was when the government of Florida set up checkpoints on interstates entering their state to try and stop visitors from carrying the covid into their state?  Seems like a century ago.

Specifically, visitors from New York (with other hotspots like Louisiana added later).

When New York's governor initially proposed a quarantine requirement for visitors from Florida, I thought that it was just petty political payback against Florida's governor. It turned into something more serious.
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ghYHZ

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Re: The 'Atlantic Bubble' begins
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2020, 04:05:03 PM »

Well the 'Atlantic Bubble' has begun......so with that in mind.....and after four months stuck at home it was time to take a day trip over to Prince Edward Island on the ferry. Something we've been doing several times a summer for years!

But a bit different now. You have to pre-register on line to enter PEI  ...... then once on the ferry...... PEI 'Customs'  :) (actually a health officer) checks your Photo ID/Drivers Licence to make sure you're a resident of the Atlantic Provinces. Then you're given a pre-clearence form to hand in when driving off the ferry. Returning that evening....... Nova Scotia 'Customs' just checks your ID for residency....no form.

Below is something I though I'd never see.....checks at the provincial borders within Canada and a Form allowing me to enter another province! But hey.....the lockdown has worked and we're seeing the benefits of it now!



And the Ferries: This time of the year some crossings are full and reservations recommended. Now they are only running at half-capacity to allow for social distancing and something new: they will let you remain in your vehicle down below for the 75 min crossing. Previously a no-no! (we had 12 cars going over + 5 trucks. Capacity is 225 cars)

https://www.ferries.ca/ns-pei-ferry/amenities/





And up on deck.....no 'Islander Big Breakfast' being served in the cafeteria.....coffee and muffins only!....with  a curtain now closing off half the space.





Hopefully tourism within the 'Atlantic Bubble' will pick up through the summer and fall to help kick-start the economy as there probably won't be tourists from elsewhere in Canada or the US this summer! There's also lots of room to keep 2 metres apart and  'Social Distance' on Island Beaches





 

« Last Edit: July 16, 2020, 04:07:05 PM by ghYHZ »
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