Roundup: COVID persists, C.B. fire hydrant concerns smoulder, boxing sisters knock out stereotypes, Bridgewater police go silent

Photo: Discover Halifax

Nova Scotia has 29 known active cases of COVID-19, with two new cases (in the Central Zone) reported in the latest government update. Two people are currently hospitalized with the disease, including one in ICU.

“Seeing a low number of cases today is encouraging,” Premier Iain Rankin says in a press release. “Let’s keep up our efforts and continue to follow the public health measures.”

Testing, and lots of it, remains the cornerstone of the province’s COVID-containment strategy. Nova Scotia Health Authority labs completed 3,685 tests on March 6 and 247,189 since the second wave of the pandemic began in October.

Source: Government of Canada

COVID across Canada
Nationally, the federal government is confirming 30,268 known active cases of COVID-19. The infection epicentres continue to be Ontario (10,389 cases), Quebec (7,100), British Columbia (4,975), and Alberta (4,949).

Those numbers only paint part of the picture, though. COVID-19 is particularly raging in First Nations communities. Reserves across Canada have an infection rate of 252 cases per 100,000 population. That’s far above the overall national infection rate of 80 cases per 100,000 population.

Photo: Discover Halifax

Boom at noon
For first-time visitors to downtown Halifax, the blast of the Noon Gun at Halifax Citadel is an alarming surprise. An American president and a contingent of security agents learned this firsthand.

“According to local lore, then-President Bill Clinton’s security detail crouched for cover and shielded the commander-in-chief when the cannon went off at the start of the G7 leaders’ summit in June 1995,” writes Dorothy Grant.

In her latest post, she looks at the history and lore of the Noon Gun. It’s not just a quaint show for tourists—it’s a link to the glory days of the Age of Sail, when Halifax was a bustling port and the daily boom helped mariners calibrate a key navigational instrument.

Learn more in Grant’s new Halifax Magazine post.

Richmond County fire hydrant concerns smoulder
Worries about dead fire hydrants around the community have sparked a discussion in Richmond County about who is responsible for fixing them. Municipal officials are conducting a study to figure out who is responsible.

“In a lot of cases, [municipal government] would provide minimum funding and then turn over these dry fire hydrants to the fire departments with no further obligation,” says Richmond County CAO Don Marchand.

Jake Boudrot has details for The Reporter.

Daisy (left) and Lucy Caldwell. Photo: Submitted

Boxing sisters knock out stereotypes
Sisters Daisy (14) and Lucy (16) Caldwell took up boxing because they were looking for a fun way to get in shape. The sport quickly hooked them, and now both girls are preparing for their first competitive bouts, on March 13 and 27.

Combat sports have been traditionally male-dominated, but the Caldwells reflect boxing’s growing inclusiveness. “Anytime I tell my friends, they’re really surprised,” Lucy says. “They also think it’s pretty cool. I like being part of it; I like knowing girls can do it too.”

Heather Brimicombe reports for The Pictou Advocate.

Bridgewater police go silent
Public receivers once able to monitor Bridgewater Police Service radio traffic will fall silent in the weeks ahead, as the force rolls out new encrypted radios.

Police claim more secretive communications will help them better serve the public. Citizen advocates say the real rationale is to avoid increasing public scrutiny. Lindsay Blanton runs Broadcastify, a service that streams communications data and audio, often sharing evidence of police misconduct.

“This information provides a valuable resource to the communities that are covered,” he says. “There are some agencies that do not like the general public listening to their communications online, however there are many agencies that are pleased to involve the general public in their day-to-day operations, and even broadcast directly to us.”

Keith Corcoran has the story for LighthouseNow.

Need to know
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This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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