During the COVID-19 outbreak, Sea to Sky Wilderness Adventures (aka) BCYukonExpeditions.com will be following mandates/orders from the Provincial Health Office (PHO) and regional health authorities, along with other authorities such as WorkSafeBC and Health Canada. In order to comply with federal, provincial and regional recommendations, we will apply and follow the protocols listed below:
Pre-trip Communication with Guests:
• Guests will be informed that we are taking precautions to limit potential viral spread
• Guests will be required to sign a declaration of risk, health, and exposure. You should limit participation to those who can attest to being well, to not having been exposed to anyone who is sick, and to not having traveled outside their province within 14 days of the commencement of the trip.
• We will let participants who are elderly and/or who have serious underlying health issues or who live and work with those who do; know that the choice is theirs’, but make sure they are aware of the risks.
• We will communicate to guests that agreement to come on the trip indicates agreement to abide by the mitigation procedures
• Guests that despite all precautions, one or more may still contract the virus
Transport Vehicle Procedures:
Notice to Reader: These practices are taken from the Transport Canada guidelines on public transportation measures for COVID 19. They have been adapted for private transport in enclosed vehicles. The guidance and recommendations contained within this document are required practices for motor carriers, bus, and van operators and passengers. The intent of this guidance is to limit transmission of COVID-19, recognizing that the use of face coverings helps to protect people in proximity to the wearer of the mask by limiting the spread of respiratory droplets at times when physical distancing (2m/6ft) is difficult to maintain. As outlined in the Federal safety guidance to protect drivers, proven interventions to limit the spread of COVID-19 include hand washing, regular cleaning of commonly touched surfaces, and respecting physical distancing by maintaining a 2m/6ft distance from other people. It is critical that these measures continue.
A. USE OF FACE COVERINGS (in accordance with Transport Canada Guidelines) All drivers and passengers will wear a non-surgical face covering at all times whilst on the shuttle vehicle. Guests must provide their own compliant (E) facemasks and have sufficient quantities for the duration of their travel or they must be provided by the company. This must be communicated to the guests during the booking process. Drivers will advise passengers to wear face coverings when boarding and throughout their trip. If operationally feasible and appropriate, operators must deny boarding to passengers who refuse to wear face coverings without a valid justification for doing so when physical distancing measures cannot be respected.
B. PHYSICAL DISTANCING Physical distancing of 2 meters / 6 ft is the preferred objective for travel in the shuttle vehicle transport where it can be practically achieved. Where it cannot be achieved, a face mask must be worn at all times and as much space between groups provided as possible. Encourage extra space between riders and drivers through education from employees and the use of signs and posters on vehicles. Use protection barriers to prevent customer contact with drivers where possible. Prevent the use of seats closest to the driver to maintain physical distancing, if possible. Advise guests to take seats at the rear of the vehicle first to minimize close contact with others from passing on the vehicle. If the vehicle is equipped with rear doors adopt a rear-loading process.
C. HAND WASHING Hand washing with warm soap and water and where not possible hand sanitizer must occur pre and post each transportation event/occurrence. Guests and/or employees must carry sufficient hand sanitizer for each leg of the transportation to and from their destination. Remind guests prior to boarding the vehicle to wash their hands or use the hand sanitizer provided.
D. AIRFLOW Airflow throughout the shuttle vehicle should be increased by opening windows and/or using the air conditioner function.
E. CLEANING – Cleaning routines must be adapted, and increased focus placed on disinfecting common surfaces as well as waste disposal after each trip before new passengers embark. Employees must be equipped with the necessary protective equipment and be made responsible to remove any waste and to disinfect surfaces. Ensure both the inside and outside of vehicles, as well as transit stations and facilities, are being cleaned regularly, including a disinfectant wipe down of all touchpoints (e.g., door handles, steering wheels, seats, windows, stair and escalator handrails, elevator buttons, fare gates, vending machines, garbage handles, benches, seats, emergency cabinets, and emergency phones). When disposing of or cleaning a face covering, passengers and drivers should take the following precautions:
● Cloth masks can be laundered with other items using a hot cycle, and then dried thoroughly
● Non-medical masks that cannot be washed should be discarded and replaced as soon as they get damp, soiled or crumpled
● Dispose of masks properly in a lined garbage bin
● Do not leave discarded masks in vehicles
Group Hygiene – all guiding activities
● Guests and guides are not required to but can opt to wear a mask or gloves during the outdoor portion of the trip. (*see transportation section for details surrounding transport)
• Guides will consistently and constantly remind guests and other contractors to either wash or sanitize hands after each encounter that has the potential to transmit the virus. Examples might include but are not limited to: using human-made infrastructure while hiking or camping on the trail (cable-cars, ladders, outhouse, food cache), going to the ‘bathroom’, before and after eating, etc.
• Have alcohol-based hand sanitizer on hand at all times
• Provide sanitizer to guests during meals or other rest stops; if guests have their own supply and it is as effective as yours, require them to use it during these times.
• As much as possible, participants must maintain physical distancing or at least 2 meters: no touching, handshaking, hugging, and sharing of food or equipment is to be permitted unless they are residents of the same household
• Where and when available have access to bio-degradable soap to be used below the high tide line as a primary option for cleaning hands. Hands should be washed thoroughly for at least 20 seconds.
Passing Others on Trails Narrow trails
• presents contact and distancing challenges for people trying to pass one another. Where possible, communicate with the approaching person or group and decide on who will move safely off the trail until the others have gone by. If it is unsafe to keep a two-meter spread, move as far as is safely possible, and ensure the passing party moves by quickly and with no physical contact.
• Ensure tents are occupied by one person or members of the same household during times of elevated risk of viral spread
• Ensure tents are pitched at least four meters apart – this will help prevent accidental contact
• Establish one cook and one cleanup person per meal
• Only the cook should serve food
• Ensure that food and beverage is not passed from person to person except among members of the same household
• Where and when available have access to bio-degradable soap to be used below the high tide line as a primary option for cleaning hands AND washing dishes. Hands should be washed thoroughly for at least 20 seconds.
• Add a few drops of bleach to rinse water; remain aware of potential toxic off-gassing when bleach combines with ammonia, isopropyl alcohol, vinegar, and other cleaning agents
First Aid and Emergency Response
• Carry additional masks and gloves in the first aid kit
• Use approved mask, gloves, and eye protection for all first aid applications
• Dispose of mask and gloves after use
• If rescue is required, ensure the victim is masked
Post-trip Communication with Guides and Guests:
• In feedback sessions or forms, ask guides whether the modified best practices significantly impaired their ability to deliver a safe and enjoyable experience for their guests
• All participants are to inform the trip or course organizer if they develop Covid-19 symptoms or are tested and confirmed positive within 2 weeks following the course so that other participants can be informed, self-isolated, and potentially be tested.
• Revise your plan as necessary
Equipment and PPE
• Before each trip ensure all company/guide owned soft goods (ropes, harnesses, slings, draws etc.) have either been isolated for a minimum of three days or have been washed in warm, soapy water
• Before each trip ensure all company/guide owned packs, tents, sleeping pads, and footwear have either been isolated for a minimum of three days or have been wiped down with warm, soapy water
• Before each trip, ensure all company/guide owned sleeping bags and liners have been cleaned according to manufacturer’s instructions
• Before each trip ensure all company/guide-owned hard goods (biners, ice axes, crampons, pro, avalanche safety gear, skis, ski poles, hiking poles etc.) have either been isolated for a minimum of three days or have been washed in warm, soapy water. For hard goods with no soft material or plastic, spraying with a dilute solution of bleach and water followed by adequately drying is an acceptable alternative.
• Ensure there is an adequate supply of appropriate masks for the length of trip and the number of participants, depending on the level of public health status