Oilsands producers step up anti-pandemic measures as outbreaks rise in area

Oilsands corporations are stepping up protecting measures as a spate of COVID-19 circumstances sweeps by the area on the similar time that 1000’s of staff are being introduced in for spring upkeep shutdowns at varied vegetation.

In Friday’s replace, Alberta reported 3,749 lively circumstances within the North Zone that features Fort McMurray, with outbreaks recognized at a number of work lodges in addition to at manufacturing services operated by oilsands producers together with Suncor Vitality Inc., Syncrude, Imperial Oil Ltd., Canadian Pure Assets Ltd. and MEG Vitality Corp.

Imperial spokeswoman Lisa Schmidt says the corporate has six lively circumstances at its Kearl oilsands mine and 35 off-site, with the entire people in isolation both in a chosen wing at one in every of its workforce lodges at Kearl or at residence.

She says the corporate began a voluntary vaccination clinic on the web site on Monday morning and has applied a speedy testing program to display staff earlier than they journey to Kearl, which is simply starting a scheduled upkeep “turnaround.”

Canadian Pure spokeswoman Julie Woo says the corporate can be utilizing speedy testing and just lately vaccinated greater than 1,600 staff and contractors. Some actions throughout a just-completed turnaround at its Horizon oilsands mine and upgrader have been deferred to manage the variety of workers on web site.

Final week, Suncor stated it might delay a deliberate upkeep shutdown at its Base Plant oilsands mine upgrader in view of the outbreaks that led to a state of emergency being declared within the Fort McMurray space.

It stated the delay of the turnaround for one of many coker models within the upgrader will permit the corporate to keep away from growing the variety of contractors within the area till related work on the Syncrude oilsands mine is accomplished, with out affecting manufacturing steerage.

Alberta leads Canada in COVID-19 circumstances and has a seven-day new an infection charge twice that as the subsequent highest province, Ontario. It tightened restrictions final week on retail, eating, private companies and gatherings to keep away from pushing its health-care system past capability.

It reported 1,980 new infections and 659 COVID-19 sufferers in Alberta hospitals, together with 150 in intensive care, on Friday.

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