vancouver social distancing

People pack beach and street in Vancouver in violation of social distancing rules

It looks like some people are having a hard time keeping their distance from one another, despite the ongoing pandemic. 

Several videos emerged on social media over the weekend showing a large street party and overcrowded beaches in Vancouver.

On Friday, a group of over 100 teens took to the streets of a Saanich neighbourhood on Vancouver Island.

Besides shouting inappropriate comments at the person who filmed the video, the party-goers also ignored physical distancing rules and gathered in clusters of about 10-30 people. 

"I have lived here for over 11 years and never have I seen this type of gathering, so to hear and see it during this COVID era was extremely disheartening," local resident Sarah Wakefield told CTV News

"Record me b**ch," one person can be heard yelling in the video.

Things did not appear to improve on Saturday night as two large gatherings occurred at Wreck Beach and English Bay, also in Vancouver. 

Videos from Wreck Beach show hundreds of people standing shoulder-to-shoulder on the sand while visitors at English Bay stood closely in front of a performer.

All of this comes just days after Premier John Horgan publicly asked young people to avoid partying. He also called on celebrities like Ryan Reynolds and Seth Rogen to send out similar messages of caution. 

Last week, B.C. reported a spike in COVID-19 cases. For the first time since the pandemic started, the province saw more than 75 new cases for three consecutive days. Many health officials in B.C. have also blamed crowded bars and nightclubs for some of the province's recent cases.

This is, of course, concerning to locals who say that COVID-19 restrictions are not being as strictly enforced as they should be. 

In a statement to CTV News, Vancouver police department spokesperson Const. Tania Vistin said that officers have been focusing on educating people about social distancing. 

"As of now, Vancouver Police have not been issuing tickets for non-compliance with social distancing/isolating/quarantining," Vistin said.

"The province...has taken the lead on this and officers specifically assigned to enforcement with the province will be enforcing any social distancing laws."

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