A Surrey firefighter hoses down a burning car in the 10600-block of 137A Street on Oct. 27. (File photo: Shane MacKichan)

A Surrey firefighter hoses down a burning car in the 10600-block of 137A Street on Oct. 27. (File photo: Shane MacKichan)

Surrey life in 2020, by the numbers

A look back at figures from a year we’d all rather forget

A collection of random Surrey-related numbers in 2020:

113: In years, the age of a family’s cherished christening gown stolen during a FedEx delivery from Ontario to Whalley. The saga had a happy ending thanks to the tenacity of a Surrey Mountie who returned the stolen heirloom to the family. Over the years, 59 people had been christened or baptized in the white lace gown.

$583,345: The amount awarded by a B.C. Supreme Court judge, for physical and psychological injuries, to a Surrey Costco worker hit by a car while collecting shopping carts in the parking lot back in 2016.

$50,000: The approximate amount of money raised online in less than 24 hours for the family of Paramjit Masutta, killed on a Sullivan-area street Dec. 15 when an unoccupied cargo van rolled down a street and hit her as she walked her two kids home from school.

42: The number of years Norm Lipinski has spent in policing, prior to being named Chief Constable and the first-ever officer in charge of the Surrey Police Service, which is set to replace the Surrey RCMP.

21: The number of people who died of overdoses in Surrey during the month of October. Throughout B.C., there were 162 illicit drug deaths that month, according to data from the BC Coroners Service – about five deaths per day province-wide.

$200,000: The amount developer Anthem Properties will spend to install a white-marble sculpture of three “dancing bears” on city-owned land near the company’s new Fleetwood-area townhouses, in a public art contribution mandated by city hall.

27.7: The Surrey-area percentage of B.C.’s total COVID-19 case number on Nov. 10, according to region-by-region statistics and map released by the BC Centre for Disease Control. The data showed that the Surrey health region was responsible for at least 27.7 per cent of the province’s total COVID-19 cases while being home to only 11 per cent of the B.C.’s population. The map indicated 3,993 cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Surrey from January to October – a number that has since grown exponentially.

42: The number of COVID-19 cases linked to a fitness centre in Surrey in mid-November. Fraser Health declared an outbreak at Platinum Athletic Club (7653 King George Blvd.) after finding evidence of COVID-19 transmission among staff and patrons. According to a social media post made by the gym, the virus was likely spread by a person who attended the gym while waiting for test results.

85: The number of tents, give or take a few, that sprung up in Peace Arch Park on a weekend in early November, the day after strict new provincial health orders were announced to prohibit people from gathering outdoors. The park, on the Canadian side, closed as a safety measure to prevent large gatherings in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic declaration in March. But the State Park, on the U.S. side, remained open through the summer and fall, providing a daily site for camping, wedding parties, family reunions and celebrations of all kinds.

900: The number of Halloween-night calls for Surrey Mounties, who encountered no large parties during what had to be one of the noisiest evenings for fireworks on local record

Seven of nine: The number of Surrey-area ridings won the NDP during November’s provincial election. While the ruling party gained ground in Surrey, with Surrey-Cloverdale changing from Liberal red to NDP orange, the city – as it was following the 2017 provincial election – remains divided between North and South.

Two: The number of cabinet posts given Surrey MLAs in November’s new-look NDP government in B.C. Surrey-Whalley MLA Bruce Ralston is Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation and Minister Responsible for the Consular Corps of British Columbia, and Surrey-Newton’s Harry Bains continues on for a second round as Labour Minister.

87: The age at which former Surrey school trustee Reni Masi died in October. The former Delta MLA first ventured into his education career in 1956 as the basketball coach at Queen Elizabeth secondary, leading multiple teams to the provincial tournament. He would serve 15 years as a teacher, and another 20 as a principal, before entering provincial politics in 1996.

644: The number of homeless people counted in Surrey during a 24-hour period in March. The 2020 Homeless Count, conducted on March 3 and March 4 by the BC Non-Profit Housing Association, identified 3,634 homeless people in Metro Vancouver.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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