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'Safest' town in the U.S. just steps away

Summary

Point Roberts has been called the 'safest' place in the U.S. with no COVID-19 cases

Locals aren't surprised at the label, but say life has slowed down since borders closed

POINT ROBERTS (NEWS 1130) — With just over 1,300 people living there, Point Roberts isn’t a big place, but it is unique.

Earlier this week, Point Roberts got a nod from Good Morning America calling it the safest place in the U.S. because it hasn’t had any recorded cases of COVID-19.

Theresa Coe manages the Point Roberts Marina Resort and says most people aren’t surprised by that label.

“Three sides of Point Roberts is water and then we have the international border up against Tsawwassen,” she says. “So we are very protected.”

The town is built on a peninsula that juts out of southern B.C. and into the United States, and it is only accessible by going through Tsawwassen.

Since the shared bordered between Canada and the U.S. has been shut down to non-essential travel during the pandemic, life in Point Roberts has looked a little different lately.

RELATED: Canada, U.S. tentatively agree to extend border closure: source

“We’re used to crossing the border weekly, if not on a daily basis. But it’s just one of those things where you just kind of sit tight and obey the rules, and go from there,” Coe says.

She manages the Point Roberts Marina Resort and says a typical day at the border would see about 1,000 crossings, but that has since dropped to around 100.

And now Coe says things are very quiet with only the permanent residents around town.

Christopher Carelton, the town’s fire chief, describes Point Roberts as resilient but says the local border service agents deserve some credit for keeping the town safe.

“They’re doing an incredible job at making sure people are coming and going that only have essential travel. I think that’s helping protect our community,” he says. “Everybody’s been reaching out to everybody and helping their neighbours to the best degree possible while still protecting themselves.”

Even though it’s small, Coe says the town is equipped with everything they need.

“Life is carrying on, just at a much slower pace,” she says, but admits she misses having Canadians around.