"Extremely vulnerable": BC announces highway closures ahead of weekend storm

Nov 27 2021, 12:43 am

As BC braces for the next period of sustained wet weather, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has announced some highway closures.

Starting Saturday, November 27 at 2 pm, Highway 3 will be closed between Hope and Princeton, along with Highway 99 between Pemberton and Lillooet which will close at 4 pm.

As a precaution, Highway 1 in the Fraser Canyon will also be closed at 2 pm. The ministry says that the exact time and duration of closures is weather-dependent.

The main reason for the highway closures is the fact that the infrastructure in affected areas is “extremely vulnerable,” according to the ministry. Highway closures will be re-evaluated on Sunday morning, and highways will be reopened when it is considered safe to do so.

Other closures include Highway 1 between Popkum and Hope due to reservoir releases by BC Hydro. The ministry states this is crucial to protecting the Jones Lake Reservoir, which has also been impacted by heavy rain.

“Each release will discharge additional water toward areas of Highway 1 that were previously affected in the Nov. 14 storm. This additional flow – combined with the increased precipitation and already high stream flows – poses a risk of impact to Highway 1 in the Laidlaw area,” reads a statement from the ministry. There is currently no timetable for reopening this portion of Highway 1.

Highway 7 will remain open between Mission and Hope with travel restrictions in place. Only essential travel is permitted as defined by the Emergency Program Act.

Environment Canada has the region on “red alert,” as there is potential for more flooding in the region.

For the latest updates on BC highways, visit DriveBC.ca or visit the @DriveBC Twitter page.

Amir AliAmir Ali

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