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Quebec City gym linked to nearly 360 cases of COVID-19, health authorities say

A trainer of Mega Gym 24h discusses with the police, called in support of the Securite Publique who came to gives the official documents for a mandatory shutdown of his gym following a major COVID 19 outbreak in Quebec City, March 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Francis Vachon

QUEBEC — A COVID-19 outbreak at a gym in Quebec City has now been linked to almost 360 cases of COVID-19.

The regional health authority says that as of today, 193 clients and staff of the Mega Fitness Gym have tested positive for the virus.

Those primary cases are believed to have spread the virus to some 30 workplaces, including restaurants, grocery stores, offices, retail stores and construction sites, ultimately infecting another 164 people.

One of the gym’s clients says he caught COVID-19 after working out there, even though he wore his mask the whole time and kept his distance from others.

But Dominic Lelievre says it was clear some clients weren’t respecting health measures and there was little enforcement, despite the presence of signs outlining the rules as well as Plexiglas barriers and hand sanitizer.

The health authority says that while the gym outbreak is significant, it is not solely responsible for the spike in cases in Quebec City, which has one of the province’s highest infection rates and was placed under lockdown last week.