Update #114
COVID-19 Event
November 3, 2020 - 5:30 pm
29 New Cases Reported in Big Bear Valley Over The Past Week

County Hospitalizations Increase Again

PLEASE Do Your Part to Minimize the Spread!

City's Request for Sub-Regions Denied by State

City Continues to Pursue Ability for Restaurants to Operate Indoors in Limited Capacity

Next City Testing Events Set for November 17, December 15

County Issues Guidelines for Ski Areas
The City of Big Bear Lake continues to work 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 weekly on Tuesdays, and also as otherwise warranted 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 185 confirmed COVID-19 cases since mid-March. Of this total, there have been 75 cases in the City of Big Bear Lake, 83 cases in Big Bear City, 24 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, 161 individuals have recovered from COVID-19, and there are currently 24 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 29 new cases reported for the Big Bear Valley over the past week, and 48 new cases over the past 2 weeks. These recent increases are the largest in the Big Bear Valley since the COVID-19 event began in March, and are very concerning to the City. These recent increases are comparable to recent spikes in other areas of the United States, and highlight the need for our residents and visitors to be especially diligent as we seek to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

With an estimated population of 22,000 people in the Big Bear Valley, and 24 currently active cases, approximately 1 in very 917 residents in our community are currently infected.
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 297 confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients hospitalized in San Bernardino County. This number has increased by 15% over the past week, with 38 more hospitalizations this week compared to last. The number of hospitalizations still remains well below the peak number of 738 in late July.

According to the latest data, there are now a total of 69 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, and this number continues to be relatively constant over the past several weeks. There are now a total of 121 intensive care beds still available in San Bernardino County.

Thankfully, the County's health care system has maintained sufficient capacity throughout the COVID-19 event.
With new COVID-19 cases in the Big Bear Valley increasing, it is now more important than ever for our residents, visitors, and businesses to do everything possible to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in our community!

Please do your part:

  • if you are feeling sick, stay at home, isolate yourself from everyone, and get tested as soon as possible,

  • if you are especially vulnerable or fearful of becoming sick, please take appropriate precautions for your circumstances, including staying at home,

  • WEAR A FACE COVERING whenever you are indoors at a local business or institution, and also if you are in close proximity to others in an outdoor setting,

  • maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others whenever possible, and

  • practice good personal hygiene - wash your hands frequently and use hand sanitizer!

The City needs EVERYONE to do your part to keep our community safe and keep our businesses open!
San Bernardino County remains in the "Purple Tier", the most restrictive tier in the State's "Blueprint for a Safer Economy", and is expected to remain in the "Purple Tier" for the next several weeks.

Last week, State officials rejected the City's (and others in our county) request to divide San Bernardino County (the largest county in the United States) into sub-regions. As such, the Big Bear Valley is expected to remain assigned to the same tier as the rest of San Bernardino County in the future.

Even if the State had approved the City's request for sub-regions, the Big Bear Valley, with a recent increase in new COVID-19 cases, would still be relegated to the "Purple Tier".
The City is disappointed in the State's rejection of the City's request for sub-regions, but continues to work with San Bernardino County officials, other cities in our county, and others to secure the ability for our restaurants to operate indoors in at least some limited capacity.

The City submitted a new request to the State to essentially shift the restrictions for restaurants by at least one tier, effectively to shift the current "Red Tier" guidelines for restaurants to the "Purple Tier" - and therefore allow indoor dining at 25% capacity with other precautions. The State has not yet responded to this request, which was submitted in recognition of the colder weather impacting nearly all communities in San Bernardino County.

Despite the recent increase in cases in the Big Bear Valley, the City continues to assert that all businesses should be permitted to operate in some reasonable capacity - as long as they take appropriate precautions, including requiring patrons and employees to wear face coverings, promote physical distancing, and promote good personal hygiene.
The City and County continue to partner to offer Big Bear testing events, and the next testing events are scheduled for Tuesday, November 17 and Tuesday, December 15 at City Hall. The appointment portal is expected to be open a few days prior to each testing event, and additional information will be provided in future City COVID-19 updates.

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.

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.
San Bernardino County public health officials have issued guidelines for ski area operations, including Snow Summit and Bear Mountain. A copy of the new guidelines is available here.

The guidance calls for ski areas to promote physical distancing and require face coverings. In addition, they are encouraged to limit ticket availability on peak dates and to employ contactless pick-up kiosks for lift-ticket purchases.
Ski areas are also required to expand the cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched surfaces, including rental items such as ski and snowboard gear, goggles and ski poles, etc. They should also regularly disinfect ski lifts, and limit the capacity on trams and shuttle buses (as well as disinfecting and sanitizing them multiple times a day). Group skiing or snowboarding lessons must be limited to small groups and ski lifts to members of the same party. Ski lift singles lines are prohibited.
Stay Informed!
Sign up for City of BBL Updates,
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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
  • 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