N.B. pulls out of Atlantic bubble; Fredericton region moving to orange phase

HALIFAX — New Brunswick is pulling out of the Atlantic bubble and as of midnight Thursday, all visitors will have to self-isolate for 14 days.

New Brunswick becomes the third Atlantic province this week to reimpose the self-isolation requirement on visitors. Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island pulled out on Monday after the number of cases rose in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia and the latter reported community spread of COVID-19.

The bubble allowed residents of the four provinces to travel freely within the Atlantic region, without having to self-isolate.

Chief Medical officer of health Dr. Jennifer Russell said Thursday that public health is recommending to cabinet that Zone 3 (Fredericton and central New Brunswick) move to the orange phase.

“We are taking this action because of the course of action the virus is taking in this area,” Russell said.

This is the first move back to orange for this region since it came out in June.

“There is no community transmission yet, but the threat is real,” said New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs.

Russell said that there is a record-high 1,700 people in self-isolation across the province.

With 12 new cases reported on Thursday, there are 105 active cases in New Brunswick, including one in hospital. Russell says it’s become clear that the recent cases are being “fueled by young adults.”

She says that it is vitally important that young people do three things:

  • stop gathering in large groups
  • stop travelling between zones
  • get tested as soon as symptoms emerge

Here is the geographic breakdown of the 12 new cases.

  • Zone 2 (Saint John) – eight new cases;
  • Zone 3 (Fredericton) – three new cases; and,
  • Zone 1 (Moncton) – one new case.

This is a developing story. It will be updated.

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