B.C.'s top doctor approves B.C. Hockey League's plan for return to ice

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VICTORIA — B.C. Hockey League players have been given the go-ahead to return to a limited season starting next month after the provincial health officer conditionally approved a plan for a safe return to the ice in five pod cities.

The province says the revised plan also has improved safety protocols including health screening and testing, limited travel and a pre-season quarantine system.

The government says in a release that protocols are also in place to limit interaction between players, coaches and staff from the league and the communities they play in.

The five pods will be located in Penticton, Coquitlam, Chilliwack, Vernon and Port Alberni.

Premier John Horgan says while there's a ways to go before the pandemic is over, the resumption of some activities, including getting young people back on the ice, means hope is on the horizon.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and her team are working hard to determine how to safely return more leagues back to playing sports this spring.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 12, 2021.

The Canadian Press