Estrie being watched closely: Montreal back to 8 p.m. curfew

Estrie  being watched closely: Montreal back to 8 p.m. curfew

By Matthew McCully

Starting this Sunday, Montreal and Laval will return to an 8 p.m. curfew. The Estrie region is being watched closely and risks returning to a red zone if the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase, Quebec Premier Francois Legault announced in a press conference Thursday evening.
The premier began the press conference defending the previous lockdowns and deconfinements saying the province was attempting to strike a balance between the physical and mental health of the population. Legault then took the hit for the choices his government has made in the last year as well as the announcements on the way.
“If there is one person to blame, it’s me,” the premier said, “At the end, it’s me who decides.”
He then referred to the old adage, “If you want to be liked, don’t go into politics, get a dog.”
In addition to Montreal and Laval returning to an 8 p.m. curfew this Sunday, Legault announced that three regions already under lockdown, Capitale-Nationale, Chaudière-Appalaches and l’Outaouais, will have their emergency measures prolonged until Sunday, April 18. “It’s concerning, even with the measures announced last week,” Legault said, explaining those regions will have an 8 p.m. curfew, all non-essential businesses and schools will remain closed, and places of worship can have a maximum of 25 people at services.
Legault said health officials are watching the Estrie region by the hour, and moving to a red zone is a possibility if the uptick in cases continues.
On the vaccination front, Legault said things are moving well and encouraged the population, when it is there turn, to get the shot.
Earlier in the day, the government sent out a press release prohibiting people from red and orange zones from traveling to yellow zones.
Only essential travel (work, health or humanitarian reasons) is permitted from red and yellow zones to Nunavik, Terres-Cries-de-la-Baie-James, Côte-Nord, Nord-du-Québec, and the Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine regions. Offenders will be subject to fines ranging from $1,000 to $6,000.
Quebec reported 1,609 new cases of COVID-19, the highest daily increase in two months. There are currently 11,452 active cases in the province. Nine new deaths were reported, bringing the total to 10,718 deaths related to the virus since the beginning of the pandemic.
Hospitalizations in the province increased by 23 for a total of 566, and there are 132 patients in intensive care, an increase of nine from the day before.
In the Estrie 59 new cases of COVID-19 were reported, for a total of 263 active cases in the region. The bulk of the new cases reported came from Sherbrooke (23), while 10 came from the Haute-Yamaska and nine were reported in the Pommeraie. Other sectors of the Estrie reported five cases or less.
No new deaths were reported in the last day. To date, 185 cases of variants have been reported in the region.

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