Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth is using his authority under the Emergency Program Act to prohibit non-essential travel between three regional zones in BC.

The order applies to everyone in the province, including non-essential travelers from outside the province.

The regional zones are Vancouver Island Health Authority, the area covered by the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley Health Authorities, and the region encompassed by the Northern and Interior Health Authorities.

The province says the order puts legal limits only on travel between these regional zones.

However, the Provincial Health Officer’s guidance remains unchanged and everyone is urged to continue staying within their local community and only making trips for essential purposes.

Farnworth’s order will be in effect from today until May 25.

In the coming days, the province will also work with police to set up periodic road checks at key travel corridors during times associated with leisure travel to remind travelers of the order.

These road checks will be set up near ferry terminals and on major highways connecting different regions of the province.

If deemed necessary by police, fines for $575 can be handed for violating the Emergency Program Act travel restrictions.