The Okanagan Rail Trail, which is 50 kilometres in length, starts at the north end of Kalamalka Lake and ends at the centre of Okanagan Lake in downtown Kelowna. (Contributed)

The Okanagan Rail Trail, which is 50 kilometres in length, starts at the north end of Kalamalka Lake and ends at the centre of Okanagan Lake in downtown Kelowna. (Contributed)

Okanagan Rail Trail bathrooms removed from trail head amid COVID-19

RDNO removes porta-potties from Kickwillie entrance to curb spread of virus

Okanagan Rail Trail users will have one less place to do their business amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Regional District of North Okanagan announced March 25 it will remove porta-potties from the Kickwillie entrance of the rail trail as they can’t be disinfected between each use.

The parking area at this entrance was closed two days prior when the District of Coldstream announced closures of public spaces, parks, beaches and parking lots to allow for social distancing.

The RDNO’s removal of the restroom facilities is an extra measure to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“We do not make decisions like this lightly, but we are absolutely focused on taking actions for the health of our community,” community services general manager Mike Fox said.

“The RDNO is following the direction of the province, and after BC Parks closed the washrooms at the Kekuli Bay Provincial Park, we felt it was appropriate to do the same at Kickwillie.”

Meanwhile, the Greater Vernon Community Gardens, located in West Vernon, East Hill and Okanagan College, won’t be opened until further notice.

The proximity of garden beds is too close to allow for two metres of social distancing, the RDNO said.

At peak times, these gardens, which were slated to open April 5, can be a high-traffic location with older adults who may be more susceptible to COVID-19.

READ MORE: Why you don’t know which B.C. city has COVID-19 cases: Interior Health explains

READ MORE: Coldstream closes public places


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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