B.C.'s record-breaking state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic has now been renewed 13 times, as the province announced the latest extension Tuesday.
This is the longest period the province has ever been in a state of emergency, and the declaration will remain for at least another two weeks. A 14th renewal is possible mid-September.
B.C. first entered a state of emergency because of the pandemic on March 18, the day after provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry declared a public health emergency.
States of emergency allow B.C.'s minister of public safety and solicitor general to use "extraordinary powers" to support the pandemic response, as outlined under the Emergency Program Act. States of emergency must be renewed every two weeks to remain in effect.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, B.C.'s longest provincial state of emergency was in 2017, when it was in place for 10 weeks, or five renewal periods, during the wildfire season.