Emergency Info

Timely and behind the scenes information around incident response and events impacting travel.

Current Emergency Highway Advisories and Resources Page

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Ka-BOOM! 3 Types of Remote Avalanche Control in BC

“Even the largest avalanche is triggered by small things.” Vernor Vinge, author Rain… Wind… The weight from a layer of fresh snow… Warming temperatures… It doesn’t take much to break the bonds that hold a snowpack together, releasing a cascade of snow and debris down a mountainside scarred by avalanche paths. But it’s our avalanche technicians’ job to beat Mother Nature to the punch near BC highways. While the most common method for triggering controlled avalanches is helibombing (in...

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BC on Fire: How We Help Battle the Blaze

In 2017, the wildfires that ravaged the interior of BC were the worst our province has ever seen. More than 1,200,000 hectares of the province were impacted by wild fires – surpassing the 1958 record of 856,000 hectares.  At the peak of the emergency – thousands of people were evacuated from their homes, many vital sections of our transportation network were closed and a thick blanket of smoke hung across our province – giving us all some perspective of...

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Straight out of the Floods and into the Wildfires

Many BC wildfires occur far from cities and towns, but sometimes they threaten homes, businesses and infrastructure, such as highways and bridges.With hundreds of wildfires heating up around the province and not showing any signs of cooling down soon, we thought a roundup of wildfire preparedness tips and evacuation information was in order. We asked our friends at PreparedBC  for more information and they shared all of the handy and helpful tips below to help you prepare for a...

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How to be an Emergency Smart Traveller

How to be an Emergency Smart Traveller

Our friends at PreparedBC are your go-to for all things emergency prep – both for the home and while you’re out exploring the province. So we invited them to share instructions on what you can do to incorporate emergency preparation into your travel plans.    The journey is the destination, and with British Columbia’s breathtaking scenery you’ll likely make a few stops along the way during summer vacay. Understanding the potential risks and considering them in your travel plans...

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Avalanche Closure Time Cut by Explosive Innovation

The Kootenay Pass avalanche team wanted to shorten road closures due to avalanche control, because at the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure our biggest drive is to keep people and goods moving efficiently and safely along BC highways. When the new avalanche explosion hardware and software were installed in 2015, BC became the first Gazex system user in the world, to not only suggest this change, but to incorporate new software successfully into an existing system.

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How to Keep Traffic Moving in Avalanche Country

It looks like something out of Star Wars. Large metal towers dominating a vantage point over a frozen cliff face that suddenly drop explosives charges, triggering a wall of snow that cascades down the mountain. But this isn’t science fiction. It’s a new technology designed to make roads safer and cut down on traffic headaches. It’s called a Remote Avalanche Control System, or RACS, and this winter we’re piloting it along a stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway called Three...

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12 Practical Steps to Repairing Flood Damage in the South Peace

We’re working as hard as we can to repair roads in the South Peace region, after major flooding in mid-June 2016 damaged more than 300 sites. Restoring roads takes some or all of 12 steps.

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See the Road to Flood Recovery in South Peace

See the Road to Flood Recovery in South Peace

When severe flooding caused by heavy rains wiped out several sections of highway and side road in Northern BC, crews and heavy equipment were quick to respond. The Peace Region flooding began June 15, impacting 186 sites on six numbered highways (97 South, 2 at Dawson Creek, 29 South, 29 North, 52 North) and 40 side roads. There was serious devastation to infrastructure, homes and other personal property. But by noon on June 23, all six highways and 21...

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Vulcan Logic and the Next Generation of BC Highway Barrier

Last fall, we replaced a section of Highway 19 concrete median barrier with an emergency access gate – also known as a Vulcan Barrier (please excuse any ensuing Star Trek jokes) – the first on Vancouver Island highways (Spock would be so proud!). Other types of emergency gates can be found in some parts of the province, such as Kelowna and the Alex Fraser Bridge in Delta. Why a gate? When an incident closes a BC highway, redirecting traffic...

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