Update #108
COVID-19 Emergency
October 1, 2020 - 3 pm
Now a Total of 9 Active COVID-19 Cases

Hospitalizations Leveling Off

Only 1 Positive Test from September 22 Big Bear Testing Event

Please Get Tested, Even if You Don't Have Symptoms

City Continues to Evaluate Special Events

County Remains at Purple Tier
The City of Big Bear Lake is working hard to ensure that the residents, second home owners, investors, businesses, and visitors in our community have the correct information about the status of COVID-19 in Big Bear Lake and the City's response to the COVID-19 event.

This email newsletter is the official guidance from the City of Big Bear Lake, and the City appreciates everyone's adherence to the guidance outlined herein. This email newsletter also serves as the City's official press release regarding the City's COVID-19 response, and press inquiries may be directed to City Manager Frank Rush at 909-866-5832 or via email.
The City issues these COVID-19 updates periodically as significant or new information emerges. To be sure you are receiving the latest and most accurate information, please sign up for this email newsletter by clicking here . PLEASE share this email newsletter with anyone and everyone, as we want to reach as many people as possible with this information. Thank you!
According to the latest data from San Bernardino County, there have now been a cumulative total of 123 confirmed COVID-19 cases since mid-March. Of this total, there have been 59 cases in the City of Big Bear Lake, 48 cases in Big Bear City, 13 cases in Sugarloaf, and 3 cases in Fawnskin.

The City receives Big Bear Valley-specific information from San Bernardino County contact tracers. According to the latest report, 114 individuals have recovered from COVID-19, and there are currently only 9 active cases in the Big Bear Valley. Thankfully, there have been no deaths attributed to COVID-19 in the Big Bear Valley.

There have been 8 new cases reported for the Big Bear Valley over the past week, and 19 new cases over the past 2 weeks. This recent increase is concerning, however, County contact tracers report that several of these individuals have now recovered. The City continues to closely monitor the active cases in the Big Bear Valley.

Despite the recent increase, the Big Bear Valley continues to be fortunate to experience a low incidence of COVID-19.
Because any COVID-19 patients from the Big Bear Valley would likely be treated by other, larger hospitals in San Bernardino County, City officials continue to closely monitor hospitalization data in the entire County.

According to the latest data, there are currently 223 confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients hospitalized in San Bernardino County. This number has decreased from a peak of 738 patients on July 25, and has remained relatively constant in recent weeks.

According to the latest data, there are now a total of 57 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, and this number has also steadily decreased over the past two months. There are now a total of 164 intensive care beds still available in San Bernardino County.

Thankfully, the County's health care system has maintained sufficient capacity throughout the COVID-19 emergency.
The City, in partnership with San Bernardino County, hosted a Big Bear testing event at City Hall on September 22. A total of 110 individuals were tested for COVID-19, with only 1 individual testing positive, thankfully.

The City and County have now partnered together on 4 testing events in Big Bear. A combined total of 687 individuals have been tested at the 4 events, with only 4 positive tests - thankfully.
San Bernardino County continues to offer free COVID-19 testing at numerous locations off the mountain, and a complete list of testing sites and dates is available here.

The City and the County encourage EVERYONE to get tested, regardless of whether or not you have symptoms, and to get tested REPEATEDLY. Frequent testing enables infected individuals without symptoms to avoid others sooner, helping to keep everyone safe. More testing by everyone in San Bernardino County will also help the County meet the reopening criteria outlined by the State, and will help us move to the "Red Tier" sooner and allow more indoor business activities.

The City continues to work with the County on future Big Bear testing events, and is targeting either Monday, October 19 or Tuesday, October 20 for the next COVID-19 testing event. More details will be announced as the date approaches.

The City and Bear Mountain Family Medicine Urgent Care continue to wait for the delivery of COVID-19 test kits, working in partnership to provide daily testing and nearly immediate results. This testing will begin as soon as the test kits are received, and additional information will be included in future City COVID-19 updates.
The City continues to actively monitor the incidence of COVID-19 in the Big Bear Valley and elsewhere, and the fate of several special events continues to depend on the specific COVID-19 circumstances at the time decisions are made - and, as we all know, the circumstances are continually evolving.

The City is still evaluating various strategies for Halloween in The Village (Saturday, October 31), and will only move forward with this event if the City believes effective social distancing and other safety measures can be implemented. The City Council is expected to make a decision on Halloween in The Village at its regular meeting on October 12.

The City also continues to evaluate a potential rescheduled July 4 fireworks show, and is currently considering a display geared primarily for our locals that would occur on November 11 (Veterans Day). The City Council is also expected to make a decision on the fireworks show at its regular meeting on October 12.

The Christmas Tree Lighting in The Village is still approximately 8 weeks away (tentatively scheduled for Friday, November 27). We will continue to monitor COVID-19 circumstances over the next month, with a final decision expected at the November 9 City Council meeting.
The City and the County had been hopeful that the State would move San Bernardino County to the "Red Tier" when new designations were announced this past Tuesday. Unfortunately, due to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the County over the past week, San Bernardino County did not meet the State's criteria to move to the "Red Tier", and remains in the "Purple Tier" for at least 2 more weeks.

This setback is disappointing, as the City had been hopeful that the County would move to the "Red Tier" sooner so that restaurants could offer limited indoor dining and other indoor businesses and indoor Church services could resume in Big Bear Lake. Unfortunately, we will need to wait at least 2 more weeks, and perhaps longer, to make this change.

The Big Bear Valley is subject to State criteria that is measured on a County-wide basis. San Bernardino County is THE largest county in land area in the United States, and is nearly as large as the entire state of West Virginia. County officials have requested that the State of California allow the County to be divided into sub-regions for purposes of determining COVID-19 reopening, however, it does not appear that the State is inclined to consider sub-regions. Thus, the Big Bear Valley will need to wait for San Bernardino County to meet the State-prescribed criteria to move to the "Red Tier" and beyond. If it was its own county, the Big Bear Valley would meet the State's criteria to move to the "Red Tier".

A list of the business activities permitted in each tier is located here.
Stay Informed!
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The City of Big Bear Lake strives to keep our residents, property owners, investors, businesses, and visitors well-informed about the City's issues and initiatives - including the COVID-19 event - with an emphasis on information specific to Big Bear Lake and the entire Big Bear Valley.
The easiest way to stay-informed is to sign up for the City's email newsletter and other updates. It's easy to sign up - simply visit the City's website and click on "Text & Email Notifications" in the top center of the homepage. Simply click on the link, enter your name and email address, and you're all set. Signing up will ensure that you receive periodic updates about COVID-19 in Big Bear Lake, the City's new monthly newsletter - Elevation 6752', and other special communications from the City of Big Bear Lake for emergency situations, special events, and more.
In addition to the City's email updates, you can also get the latest information from the City of Big Bear Lake via the following digital platforms:
  • Visit our website by clicking here

  • "Like" us on Facebook - City of Big Bear Lake
  • Follow us on Twitter - @CityofBBL
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  • Sign up for text message alerts by clicking here .
Please help us spread the word, and share the City's digital communications platforms with your family, friends, other residents, property owners, frequent visitors, or anyone else who is interested in Big Bear Lake. Thank you!
Frank A. Rush, Jr., City Manager
City of Big Bear Lake
39707 Big Bear Blvd. PO Box 10000, Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Phone: (909) 866-5831 | Fax: (909) 866-5491