Casino Taxi owner says fleet-wide exposure notice should have only included 1 car

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Angie Herman, one of the owners of Casino Taxi, says health officials intend to issue a correction to the notice. (CBC - image credit)
Angie Herman, one of the owners of Casino Taxi, says health officials intend to issue a correction to the notice. (CBC - image credit)

One of the owners of Casino Taxi says the COVID-19 exposure in the Halifax company's taxi fleet isn't as broad as indicated in a public health notice sent out late Thursday.

Angie Herman said Friday that health officials intend to amend the notice, which indicated the entire fleet was affected, rather than a single driver in a single vehicle.

"As soon as [the driver] wasn't feeling well, he stopped working and he informed us and he got a test and he found out that he tested positive," Herman said.

She said there were 29 possible exposures in the one taxi, and the company provided Public Health with the contact names and numbers of all passengers.

But Herman said the public exposure notice issued Thursday made things seem much more serious.

'Small, specific group'

"We've had many calls from worried, concerned people that they might be impacted by this, when the fact is it was a very small, specific group of people of which we provided very specific contact information," Herman said.

Herman said she spoke with a Public Health official Friday afternoon who agreed the exposure notice was too broad, and promised it would be corrected.

Nova Scotia Health did not immediately respond to a CBC News request for comment Friday afternoon, but the health authority issued a correction Friday night in its daily potential COVID-19 exposures notice.

"This public exposure is now void as Public Health has been able to identify all those potentially exposed to COVID-19 on May 1, 2 and 3 while using Casino Taxi," it said.

"If you have not been contacted, you are not considered at risk of exposure. Public Health continues to encourage all Nova Scotians to get tested regularly."

When the notice was originally issued, it was the first potential COVID-19 exposure in Halifax involving a taxi.

Herman said her company has completed more than 1.5 million safe trips since the start of the pandemic.

She said that as an essential service, she's in touch with Public Health officials nearly daily, and she thinks they are doing an excellent job managing the pandemic.

"I'm not angry at Public Health. I think they're working really hard. And I think that they are running really fast," she said.

Herman believes the wide warning was given in an attempt to protect the driver's privacy.

"If they said, 'Anybody who travelled in this taxi driver's car,' and they named the roof flight, they would be sharing publicly that this individual had got COVID, which is clearly not going to be acceptable," she said.

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