Update #109
COVID-19 Emergency
October 6, 2020 - 6:30 pm
13 Active COVID-19 Cases

Hospitalizations Relatively Constant

State Keeps San Bernardino County at Purple Tier,
County and City Continue to Seek Special Consideration for Rural Areas Like Big Bear

Next Big Bear COVID-19 Testing Event Set for October 20,
Will Also Include Free Flu Shots

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

City Continues to Evaluate Special Events
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 127 confirmed COVID-19 cases since mid-March. Of this total, there have been 59 cases in the City of Big Bear Lake, 52 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 13 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 5 new cases reported for the Big Bear Valley over the past week, and 14 new cases over the past 2 weeks. The number of new cases appears to be slowing down somewhat after a small spike in mid and late September.

Overall, 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 239 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 56 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, and this number has also steadily decreased over the past two months. There are now a total of 169 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 State released updated tier designations earlier today, and, unfortunately, San Bernardino County remains in the "Purple Tier". This setback was expected, but is disappointing, as it is important for our local businesses to move the the "Red Tier" and hopefully on to the less restrictive "Orange Tier" and "Yellow Tier" as colder temperatures arrive.

County and City officials continue to seek special consideration from the State to allow San Bernardino County to be divided into sub-regions for purposes of determining COVID-19 reopening. If the State approved sub-regions, the Big Bear Valley would likely qualify for the "Orange Tier" based on the most recent data. Similar outcomes are likely in the other rural areas in San Bernardino County, and the County and other rural communities are increasingly frustrated by the State's inflexible approach.

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. San Bernardino County is also nearly twice as large as the next largest county in California (Inyo County). It's also important to note the significant diversity of communities and environments in our County, which includes large suburban communities, smaller mountain communities like Big Bear, and isolated small communities in the desert. Based on these factors, the division of San Bernardino County into sub-regions seems reasonable and logical, and the City remains hopeful that the State will adjust its position in the near future.

A list of the business activities permitted in each tier is located here.
The City, in partnership with San Bernardino County, will host another Big Bear COVID-19 testing event at City Hall on October 20. The appointment portal will likely open on or around October 16 or 17, and additional details will be included in a future City update.

The October 20 event will also offer free flu shots for residents of the Big Bear Valley, and everyone is encouraged to get a flu shot!
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 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.
Stay Informed!
Sign up for City of BBL Updates,
Visit Our Other Digital Platforms
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
  • Follow us on Instagram - @citybigbearlake
  • 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