COVID-19 cases have spiked across the West Kootenay as the Omicron variant has led to a new wave of infections in B.C.
Trail had 121 new cases for the week of Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, according to weekly data from the BC Centre for Disease Control. That’s an increase of 95 over the previous week.
The Nelson area, which includes Salmo and parts of the Slocan Valley, had 69 new cases. Castlegar added 33, Creston reported 29, Grand Forks had 22, and the Arrow Lakes area that includes Nakusp increased by 17. The Kootenay Lake area meanwhile added four.
The numbers may also be lower than the true totals. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said Dec. 30 that daily numbers of cases confirmed by testing are only a fraction of actual cases and that its contact tracing efforts have been overwhelmed.
The BCCDC also released data showing cumulative totals of cases for each area from Jan. 1, 2020 to Dec. 31, 2021.
Nelson leads the West Kootenay with 974 cases during that time, of which 921 occurred in 2021.
Trail has had 676 cases, followed by Creston (456), Castlegar (417), Grand Forks (357), Arrow Lakes (143) and Kootenay Lake (60).