As Trans Mountain prepares to begin pipeline construction in Kamloops, it has put out a call to local accommodation providers to assess capacity to support the Trans Mountain workforce, in compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

With the pipeline construction workforce starting to arrive in Kamloops starting in June, Trans Mountain is working with the Kamloops Accommodation Association and Tourism Kamloops to reach out to hotels, motels and commercial accommodation providers, to see if their ability to house the Trans Mountain workforce has changed with the current situation. Trans Mountain also wanted to ensure that any accommodation location can meet public health directives, and the standards and protocols Trans Mountain has put in place to ensure the safety of our workforce and the communities where we are building the Expansion Project.

Trans Mountain’s Worker Accommodation Strategy indicates that workers would use a mix of commercial accommodations, rentals and RV sites in Kamloops. This plan was amended to focus on commercial accommodations in Kamloops and includes COVID-19 protocols for both our workers and those providing services to our workforce. Workers will be accommodated in smaller groups (20-30) in local hotels and each hotel will provide a dedicated room for daily COVID-19 screening, and workers will be temperature tested before heading to the worksites.

“We are very excited to start pipeline construction in Kamloops. We also understand the community is interested in Trans Mountain’s COVID-19 protocols and how we will continue to protect the health and safety of our workforce, their families and our communities. This revised approach to worker accommodation in Kamloops meet the standards set out from the Provincial Health Office, while supporting economic recovery in the community.” said Kate Stebbings, Senior Community Liaison, Trans Mountain Expansion Project.

“Our economy has taken a large hit due to this pandemic. Bookings in Kamloops have dropped over 90% from the same period in 2019 and our community and our businesses are facing ongoing costs with no reliable revenue anticipated this year. With Trans Mountain utilizing our local hotels and local restaurants, it provides our community with revenue to help rebuild our economy in a safe manner.”  - Tyson Andrykew, President, Kamloops Accommodation Association

Construction on the Trans Mountain Expansion Project is currently well underway in Alberta and British Columbia. In B.C., work continues at the Westridge Marine Terminal and Burnaby Terminal in the Greater Vancouver area and in BC Interior at the Kamloops Terminal and at the Black Pines Pump Station. Construction preparations are underway in several locations in the Interior of B.C., and the North Thompson region.

Trans Mountain’s first priority is the health and safety of our workforce, their families and our communities. In response to the evolving pandemic, we have implemented COVID-19 mitigation and preventative measures such as staggering work shifts, implementing a work-from-home approach when possible, following physical distancing, temperature testing, working in close proximity, enhanced cleaning and sanitization and use of appropriate PPE at our worksites.