CGL has seen a total of 85 cases since March 2020. (CGL website/Lakes District News)

CGL has seen a total of 85 cases since March 2020. (CGL website/Lakes District News)

Spring thaw to slow down pipeline work

2,781 workers as of Mar. 22 working the pipeline route

Coastal GasLink (CGL) pipeline work will slow down due to the spring thaw but the pipeline company is working to ramp up work this summer.

In a Mar. 18 construction update, the company said that the pipeline will see a limited workforce with spring break-up however, with the approaching summer and the latest provincial order for vaccination, the management is already planning on ramping up.

Last week, the public health officials announced that Northern Health would be getting 15,000 doses that would mainly go towards the five industrial projects with camps: Coastal GasLink, LNG Canada, B.C. Hydro’s Site C, the Trans Mountain twinning project and Rio Tinto Alcan’s Kemano T2 tunnel project.

According to the CGL update, the vaccination program includes industrial workers residing in large workforce accommodation sites, and by extension, their families and local communities. The company has also been conducting workforce testing as a part of their COVID-19 Management Plan.

At the time of going to press, the workforce numbers had gone up to 2,781 workers across the 670-kilometres of the pipeline route, from 2,044 workers at the end of February. This almost sets CGL up to the number that Northern Health and the B.C. Provincial Health Office authorized for the company ahead of the spring thaw.

CGL, along with many other industrial projects had been imposed with updated workforce limits by the public health order on Jan. 12 to curb the spread of COVID-19. In February, CGL received the authorization to increase its workforce from 963 to 2,787.

The workforce numbers across the different sections of the pipeline have also fluctuated over the past few weeks. According to the CGL update, the section 5 from North of Vanderhoof to the south of Burns Lake, saw a decline from 26 workers at the Little Rock Lake Lodge to 4 workers. Workers at the 7 Mile Lodge for section 6 from south of Burns Lake to south of Houston went from 93 workers to 196 workers and workers are the Huckleberry Lodge for section 7 from south of Houston to north of Morice Lake, went from 32 to 97 workers.

CGL’s COVID-19 updates clarify that the pipeline has seen a total of 85 cases since March 2020, with no new cases at the moment. These weekly updates related to case numbers and workforce numbers were put in place by CGL last month, in an attempt towards increased transparency.

ALSO READ: Coastal GasLink gets a nod to increase workforce from 963 to 2,787 people

Priyanka Ketkar
Multimedia journalist

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