Now that Ontario has permitted Lambton County residents to enter Phase 2 of the Province’s schedule for gradual relaxation of restrictions associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, some of you are likely eager to participate once again in our various outdoor activities.
While members are obviously free to hike, bike or paddle at any time on their own or informally with family or friends, we would hope that all appropriate Covid-19 precautions would be followed. However, only LOC-sanctioned events authorized by the respective committee chairs and supervised by a responsible leader will appear and be promoted on the LOC website.
Each of the event committee chairpersons have been requested to schedule up to three activities on a trial basis during July after which Council will assess to what extent participants have complied with the protocol guidelines before moving forward. In that regard, here is the procedure which members must follow in order to register for an event.
First of all, you will notice a new instruction box entitled “IMPORTANT: LOC Covid-19 Guidelines” at the top of the home page when logging into the LOC website. Clicking this box, will take you to a page which summarizes the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” which are generally a reminder of many of the rules and precautions which you should already be familiar with (e.g. cleaning hands, physical distancing, etc.). However, also included are many activity-specific rules for hiking, cycling and paddling participants. These Guidelines can also be found on the LOC website under Documents/Members Only. Please carefully read these Guidelines and ideally make a printed copy to refer to when planning to register for any LOC activities.
Within these Guidelines, you should pay particular attention to the link for the online COVID-19 Self-Assessment tool (provided by the Province) which all participants MUST complete online within 24 hours before the start of their registered event. Upon completion of this self-assessment, you will be advised to either go get tested, stay home and isolate, choose to stay home or risk participation if in a vulnerable group (e.g. over age 70), or freely participate in the activity.
Each LOC-sanctioned event will be limited to 10 members who MUST have registered in advance. Only pre-registered members can attend; no ‘drop-ins’ or guests will be allowed. Upon registering, the Guidelines will appear for review and agreement by each registrant before being able to continue the process. The last step to complete the event registration is to read and agree to the Covid-19 event-specific Waiver in which each participant assumes all risks associated with both the event and Covid-19, as well as confirms his/her fitness and skill level required to safely participate.
Upon arriving at the pre-registered event, the event leader will review the printed registration list, ask all the typical questions (e.g. anyone experienced with first aid, etc.), remind about social distancing requirements, confirm that each participant has completed the Covid-19 Self-Assessment online tool within the last 24 hours, and is comfortable proceeding with the outdoor activity. Upon completion of each activity, the event leader will prepare and print an attendance report in the (hopefully) unlikely need for the Club to initiate Covid-19 contact tracing should a participant later show symptoms of the disease.
Of course, we all hope that the current unfortunate pandemic problem will be resolved in the not-too-distant future. In the meantime, Council will continue to monitor the situation and communicate as appropriate to all our members. We thank you all for your patience and understanding as well as your compliance with our new Guidelines.
Hope to see you all out there again!