So far, the results appear to be negative.
Enacted a week ago, Canada’s new rule requiring a negative COVID-19 test before being allowed to board flights into the country doesn’t appear to be stemming the flow of infected passengers.
While the numbers aren’t exactly exhaustive, as new cases are listed as they become known, data made public by Health Canada shows 35 international arrivals carried at least one COVID-positive passenger since Jan. 7 — the day Transport Canada made it mandatory for all passengers over age five to have tested negative for the virus 72 hours before boarding.
Those numbers may grow over the next seven days, as cases are added to the publicly available list throughout its two-week lifespan.
A total of 178 infected international flights have landed in Canada since the beginning of the year — 62 alone landing in Toronto.
One of those flights — Air Canada 849 from London Heathrow — touched down at YYZ on Jan. 8, just two days after Canada lifted its ban on passenger flights from the U.K. due to the virulent new strain of COVID-19 that apparently originated there.
Cancun was the city with the most infected Toronto-bound flights with five, followed by Dubai, Dublin, Fort Lauderdale, Frankfurt, Punta Cana and Istanbul all with three each.
Other airports that saw two or more departures to Toronto with COVID-19 infected passengers include Cairo, Abu Dhabi, Fort Meyers, Chicago, São Paulo, Warsaw, Varadero, Washington-Dulles and Puerto Plata.
Toronto was the source of 10 international infections — three flights from Pearson airport to Delhi carried at least one infected passenger, two to Varadero, and one each to Montego Bay, Lisbon, Dubai and Doha.
Calgary almost saw as many inbound infections as Toronto, counting 59 flights so far this year.
An airport that sees about three times less flights than Toronto, Calgary saw larger concentrations of infections coming from one place — 10 infected flights originated in both Dallas and Phoenix, seven each from Cancun, Puerto Vallarta and Denver, five from Los Cabos, and three from Los Angeles.
Thirty infected international flights landed in Montreal and 23 in Vancouver.