March 20, 2020 / 6:40 PM / 9 days ago

Canada oil sands work camp reports coronavirus infection

WINNIPEG, Manitoba, March 20 (Reuters) - A northern Alberta work camp near Canada's oil sands has reported a case of coronavirus, highlighting the potential risk posed by the outbreak to the commodities industry, which often sees large groups of workers together housed together in remote areas.

Houston-based Civeo Corp sent a letter on Thursday to companies housing workers at its Borealis Lodge of a "presumptive positive" coronavirus case in a worker who stayed there this week.

The worker had been taken by ambulance to hospital. All areas where the worker was thought to have spent time were sanitized, Civeo said in a statement on Friday. Test results are pending, it said.

Such camps are a common form of lodging for workers involved in oil production, construction or other trades at the oil sands near Fort McMurray, Alberta. Spread of the COVID-19 disease at the camps could make it more difficult to maintain production levels of Canada's largest source of crude.

Reporting by Rod Nickel, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien

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