Katherine Engqvist

West Shore fire chiefs (from right) Dean Ford (Highlands), Paul Hurst (View Royal), Stephanie Dunlop (Metchosin), Chris Aubrey (Langford) and John Cassidy (Colwood) are concerned about the community’s well-being after seeing a dramatic increase in mental health calls. (Katherine Engqvist/News Staff)

Vancouver Island first responders raise alarm after dramatic increase in mental health calls

Frontline braces, fearing for community’s mental health over winter

West Shore fire chiefs (from right) Dean Ford (Highlands), Paul Hurst (View Royal), Stephanie Dunlop (Metchosin), Chris Aubrey (Langford) and John Cassidy (Colwood) are concerned about the community’s well-being after seeing a dramatic increase in mental health calls. (Katherine Engqvist/News Staff)
B.C. Emergency Health Services primary care paramedic Em Funk shows off the personal protective equipment their team uses whenever they are dealing with a suspected case of COVID-19 while on the job. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

COVID-19 infection rate among B.C. paramedics almost zero

Eight B.C. Emergency Health Services Members have tested positive for COVID-19

B.C. Emergency Health Services primary care paramedic Em Funk shows off the personal protective equipment their team uses whenever they are dealing with a suspected case of COVID-19 while on the job. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
The remains of the Capital CityCentre Hotel after a late-night fire tore through the building Thursday, Nov. 5. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
The remains of the Capital CityCentre Hotel after a late-night fire tore through the building Thursday, Nov. 5. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
B.C. Ambulance Services’ Island manager Brad Cameron (from right) with primary care paramedics Em Funk, Tyrone Trotter, Fiona Galvin and Peter Hill at their Leigh Road station. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Vancouver Island heroes reflect on 2020

First responders share some of the ways they have continued to doing their jobs through the pandemic

B.C. Ambulance Services’ Island manager Brad Cameron (from right) with primary care paramedics Em Funk, Tyrone Trotter, Fiona Galvin and Peter Hill at their Leigh Road station. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
(Black Press Media file photo)

Be prepared: Know what to do in the event of a tsunami warning

Localized alert systems can provide potentially life-saving information

(Black Press Media file photo)
Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie is calling for more in-community supports. (Black Press Media file photo)

The State of Aging: COVID-19 exposed a long-term care system already in crisis

A look at Greater Victoria’s aging population and what that will mean for the future

Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie is calling for more in-community supports. (Black Press Media file photo)
Kelly Ellard and her father Lawrence leave the Vancouver courthouse. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Teen killer Kelly Ellard gets day parole extension allowing up to five days at home

Ellard is serving a life sentence for the 1997 murder of 14-year-old Reena Virk

Kelly Ellard and her father Lawrence leave the Vancouver courthouse. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)
View Royal Fire Chief is calling for solutions after two preventable incidents at Thetis Lake over the long weekend. (Black Press Media file photo)

View Royal fire chief calls for realistic solutions to ‘mess’ at Thetis Lake

Emergency crews harassed while extinguishing brush fire, rescuing drunk 15-year-old during long weekend calls

View Royal Fire Chief is calling for solutions after two preventable incidents at Thetis Lake over the long weekend. (Black Press Media file photo)
One person died following a head-on crash on an undivided corner of the Trans-Canada Highway between Leigh Road and West Shore Parkway in Langford in January 2019. (File photo from BC Transportation/Twitter)

Work ahead of schedule to improve deadly stretch of Trans-Canada Highway in Langford

Temporary measures were installed after two fatal crashes in less than a month

One person died following a head-on crash on an undivided corner of the Trans-Canada Highway between Leigh Road and West Shore Parkway in Langford in January 2019. (File photo from BC Transportation/Twitter)
Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre. (Black Press Media file photo)

Investigation launched after sudden death of Saanich inmate

B.C. Corrections, B.C. Coroners Service investigating cause, circumstances surrounding death

Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre. (Black Press Media file photo)
When announcing the project, provincial minister Lisa Beare said the new overpass on Highway 17 at Keating Cross Road will cost at least $44 million, with actual construction of the flyover scheduled to start as early as 2021. (Black Press Media file photo)

Work gets underway on Pat Bay Highway overpass at Keating Cross Road

Motorists are advised to expect some delays in July and August

When announcing the project, provincial minister Lisa Beare said the new overpass on Highway 17 at Keating Cross Road will cost at least $44 million, with actual construction of the flyover scheduled to start as early as 2021. (Black Press Media file photo)
The Independent Investigations Office of BC was called to investigate after a woman had her arm broken while being taken into police custody on the West Shore. (Black Press file photo)

IIO finds no excessive force used by West Shore RCMP officers during arrest

Police watchdog called to investigate after woman breaks arm while being taken into police custody

The Independent Investigations Office of BC was called to investigate after a woman had her arm broken while being taken into police custody on the West Shore. (Black Press file photo)
Electron micrograph image of E.coli is shown in a handout photo. MCR-1, a gene that makes bacteria resistant to the killing effects of antibiotics, has been detected in stored samples of E. coli collected in 2010 in Canada. Now scientists are wondering if the superbug gene had made its way into Canada even earlier - and just what that could mean. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Brian Coombes Laboratory, McMaster University)

Superbugs keeping microbiologists up at night

COVID-19 likely won’t contribute to more superbugs, says UVIC professor

Electron micrograph image of E.coli is shown in a handout photo. MCR-1, a gene that makes bacteria resistant to the killing effects of antibiotics, has been detected in stored samples of E. coli collected in 2010 in Canada. Now scientists are wondering if the superbug gene had made its way into Canada even earlier - and just what that could mean. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Brian Coombes Laboratory, McMaster University)
Average gas prices in Greater Victoria for the month of April hit a low not seen since 2016. (Black Press Media file photo)

Greater Victoria gas prices dip to lows not seen since February 2016

Average monthly gas prices haven’t consistently been below $1 since 2009

Average gas prices in Greater Victoria for the month of April hit a low not seen since 2016. (Black Press Media file photo)
A woman with a mask on walks across View Street in Victoria. The streets of downtown Victoria are quieter than usual in the wake of physical isolation mandates from the provincial and federal governments in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)

Is COVID-19 a sign of things to come?

What history has taught us about deadly pathogens

A woman with a mask on walks across View Street in Victoria. The streets of downtown Victoria are quieter than usual in the wake of physical isolation mandates from the provincial and federal governments in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
With provincial government spending focused on emergency response, community service providers are left to fill the voids in a fractured system. (Black Press Media file photo)

Mental Health: A look at a fractured system

In this special series, VI Free Daily reporters share Vancouver Island stories

With provincial government spending focused on emergency response, community service providers are left to fill the voids in a fractured system. (Black Press Media file photo)
A longtime coach, Dave Saunders, wants to see mental health talked about more, especially by local sports organizations so more people know where to turn. (Katherine Engqvist/News Staff)

Mental Health: Fractured services leave community to fill gaps

Greater Victoria service providers working together to help youth

A longtime coach, Dave Saunders, wants to see mental health talked about more, especially by local sports organizations so more people know where to turn. (Katherine Engqvist/News Staff)
Motorists are reporting black ice under the McKenzie interchange. (DriveBC traffic camera)

Black ice causing problems for motorists, pedestrians

Slippery roads, sidewalks causing delays

Motorists are reporting black ice under the McKenzie interchange. (DriveBC traffic camera)
Greater Victoria got hit with another snowfall Tuesday night. Reader Rivers Stevens sent this photo in from Dean Park. (Photo by Rivers Stevens)

How much snow is at your home?

Readers send measurements, photos from across Greater Victoria

Greater Victoria got hit with another snowfall Tuesday night. Reader Rivers Stevens sent this photo in from Dean Park. (Photo by Rivers Stevens)
A lack of advanced care options on the West Shore means many seniors are being forced to spend their final days away from their families and the communities they’ve spent their lives calling home. (Pixabay photo)

EXCLUSIVE: Seniors care lacking in Greater Victoria’s West Shore

Private report shows dire need for hospice, long-term care beds for West Shore seniors

A lack of advanced care options on the West Shore means many seniors are being forced to spend their final days away from their families and the communities they’ve spent their lives calling home. (Pixabay photo)