The City of Tecumseh is planning “circuit breaker” closures of most public facilities in hopes of mitigating the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant.
The closings, starting January 2, will last up to two weeks.
“The COVID-19 case count has increased exponentially due to the Omicron variant, exceeding all projections, with case rates in Windsor-Essex, and Tecumseh in particular, extremely high,” said Mayor Gary McNamara. “We will monitor trends over the holidays and may adjust the closure of some facilities, however we wanted to be prepared if the current trend continues beyond the holidays. I appreciate that this change in operations may be inconvenient, but I believe it is essential to help slow the spread of COVID-19. “
Holiday closures and normal city service reductions are in effect from December 24 through January 1.
A circuit breaker is a brief lockout or closure with a set end date to interrupt the chain of transmission.
During the Tecumseh circuit breaker, the city hall, most municipal offices, clubs, satellite facilities, public works, the parks department, and fire stations will be closed to the public. The services will be available remotely.
Council and committee meetings will also be held virtually.
Essential public services such as winter control, garbage collection, water and sewage will continue.
The Tecumseh Arena will remain open with spectator limits, reduced locker room time, and measures to quickly move teams in and out of the arena before and after matches.
City officials said they made the circuit breaker decision after a “sharp spike” in COVID-19 rates in Windsor-Essex that is outpacing the rest of Ontario.
Ontario’s case rate is 126 per 100,000 residents. Windsor-Essex is at 145.1 per 100,000. Tecumseh’s case rate is 178.7 per 100,000.
The city said it will monitor the COVID-19 situation during the breaker period and inform residents of next steps, whether that means reopening facilities or continuing with closures.