Premier Doug Ford said that Ontario is so much “better prepared” for a potential second wave of COVID-19 as he once again compared his government’s novel coronavirus response to the “reckless” approach south of the border.
“It's been reckless down there, that's the only way I can describe it, they’ve been reckless, they've moved forward too quickly,” Ford said, speaking at a news conference on Tuesday afternoon. “I'll always listen to health and science over getting pressure from anyone.”
The comments come as Ford was discussing a possible second wave of COVID-19 in Ontario, which he says his health team is looking in to, with plans to release a strategy on the issue “shortly.”
READ MORE: Ontario premier fears opening border will spark second wave of COVID-19
Though details on the strategy were slim, Ford was asked if his government would consider reinstating public health measures if the province does record a significant rise in cases, to which the premier said “Let's cross that bridge when we come to it.”
“Right now, we are doing great as a province. We see the decline in cases, I know I've said it before, I'll say it again, they showed me this map of North America with all large jurisdictions like Ontario and we're ranked number one, way ahead of everyone in North America.”
Last week, Ford said he had spoken to a doctor who informed him that the second wave of COVID-19 in Ontario would begin as soon as he opened up the border to international travel.
The number of new COVID-19 cases reported in Ontario on a daily basis has been trending downward in recent weeks, while some areas south of the border are experiencing a massive surge.
On Sunday, the state of Florida recorded more than 15,000 new infections, the highest number of new cases reported by a state in a single day since the pandemic began. A day earlier, the state of Texas recorded more than 10,000 new cases.
The spikes come after these states and a few others moved quickly to reopen following weeks of closure as a result of COVID-19, an approach Ford says Ontario will not follow.
“They've moved forward too quickly and we're going right at the right speed,” he said.
And that shouldn’t be an issue until at least later this summer. Earlier today, CTV News confirmed that Canadian and U.S. officials have agreed to keep the border between the two countries closed to non-essential travel until at least August 21.
“Don't get me wrong, I love the Americans, I just don't want them up here right now.”
Florida couple caught allegedly ignoring self-quarantining rules in Ontario
As Ford expressed his worry over U.S. residents travelling north of the border, it appears some Americans are already displaying that "reckless"behavior right here in Ontario.
According to Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) in North Bay, two Florida seniors were fined $1,000 each for failing to self-isolate for 14 days once they arrived at a seasonal property on July 3.
They were charged with Failure to Comply with an Order Prohibiting or Subjecting to any Condition the Entry into Canada under section 58 of the Quarantine Act.
The OPP says the couple arrived in Canadas through Fort Erie. It’s unclear how the pair managed to cross the border which has been shut down to non-essential travel for months.
The seniors are currently being monitored during isolation by the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit.