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COVID-19 outbreak quarantines Nordic skiers in Canmore

"There are 11 cases tied to this outbreak – all are active."
20201117 Nordic Centre COVID 0025
Nordic athletes training at the Canmore Nordic Centre recently tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday (Nov. 17). EVAN BUHLER RMO PHOTO

CANMORE – Eleven positive COVID-19 cases are connected to an outbreak among the Nordic ski community in Canmore, according to government officials.

On Tuesday (Nov. 17), high-level athletes, national organizations and clubs were notified of positive cases “within the Canmore regional training environment.”

“There are 11 cases tied to this outbreak – all are active,” said Zoë Cooper, communications director with Alberta Health, in an email to the Outlook.

Cooper said it was added to the province's “outbreak locations by zone” list under sports cohorts in the Calgary zone.

Nordiq Canada, the governing body for cross-country and Para Nordic skiing, confirmed the positive cases, and said its assisting effected individuals and those who have come in close contact with them.

“These individuals are in quarantine and following all of the required protocols in place to protect themselves and the community at large,” said Nordiq Canada communications advisor Chris Dornan in an email.

“Contact tracing has also been initiated and those who have deemed to have been in close contact have been notified of their risk of exposure. These individuals have also been advised of steps that need to be taken.”

Additional details aren't being provided to protect confidentiality of those involved.

The cross-country ski track, Frozen Thunder at the Canmore Nordic Centre Provincial Park serves as a regional hub for local and out-of-province Nordic ski athletes and personnel.

It’s also a pre-season training ground for Biathlon Canada, and skiing destination for the general public.

“Biathlon Canada was made aware of a positive COVID-19 test within the Canmore regional training environment by Nordiq Canada,” said Heather Ambery, general manager of Biathlon Canada in an email.

“As per our established protocols, all athletes and staff within the senior national team were notified of the positive case and have been in touch with our team doctor to identify if there were any close contacts.”

The Outlook will update the story as more information becomes available.

Jordan Small

About the Author: Jordan Small

An award-winning reporter, Jordan Small has covered sports, the arts, and news in the Bow Valley since 2014. Originally from Barrie, Ont., Jordan has lived in Alberta since 2013.
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