B.C. records more than 70 new daily COVID-19 cases 3 days in a row for 1st time since the pandemic began

B.C. health officials announced 84 new COVID-19 cases Friday, the first time the province has seen more than 70 daily cases for three days straight since the start of the pandemic.

The cases continued the upward trajectory that Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry had warned about the day before, when the province saw 78 cases. That figure followed 85 cases on Wednesday.

There are now 629 active cases in the province, with 12 people in hospital and four in intensive care, Henry and B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a joint statement.

The death toll remains unchanged at 196.

"This weekend, we urge everyone to stay strong and hold the line," Henry and Dix said.

"We have it within our ability to make the changes we need to bend our pandemic curve back down and continue in our B.C. restart, but it takes the combined efforts of everyone, not just a few."

A total of 2,026 people are in self-isolation due to close contact with confirmed cases. The province has seen 4,358 cases to date, and 3,533 people have recovered.

Some bars, restaurants and nightclubs closed

Dix and Henry said several bars, restaurants and nightclubs in the Vancouver Coastal Health region have shut down following transmission events, some due to public health orders and others closing voluntarily.

Fraser Health also declared a new outbreak in the acute care section of Queen's Park Care Centre, a long-term care facility in New Westminster, B.C.

Officials did not disclose the number of cases at the centre.

Seven long-term care or assisted-living facilities and two acute-care facilities in B.C. now have active outbreaks.

Dix and Henry said there are no new community outbreaks, but there continue to be community exposure events around B.C. and on flights into and out of the province.

Northern Health also said 25 of 26 confirmed cases in Haida Gwaii, B.C., have now recovered following a community outbreak.