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B.C. highway restrictions continue as state of emergency extended

Coquihalla, Highway 99 restricted, Highway 3 open
Commercial trucks begin making their way through the Coquihalla Highway between Hope and Merritt Dec. 21, 2021. (B.C. government photo)

B.C. has extended its restrictions on two major highways affected by mid-November flooding and landslides, and its state of emergency for another two weeks.

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said Monday the province’s state of emergency is continued until the end of the day Jan. 11, with traffic restrictions on Coquihalla Highway and Highway 99 from the junction with Lilloet River Road to the Seton Lake campsite access in Lillooet also continued until further notice.

The Coquihalla continues to be open only to commercial trucks and passenger buses, with repairs continuing on 20 locations damaged by flooding and mudslides. Highway 1 through the Fraser Canyon remains closed, with work continuing on rockslide damage at Jackass Mountain and other sections.

When the Coquihalla was reopened to essential commercial traffic on Dec. 21, it allowed restrictions to be lifted on Highway 3 from Hope to Princeton, which had been serving as the only road route to the B.C. Interior since record rain and flooding Nov. 14-15.

Under B.C. law, a state of emergency must be renewed after two weeks to give the province authority to close highways, order evacuations and take other actions for public safety.

VIDEO: Section of Coquihalla washes away in record rainstorm

RELATED: B.C.’s climate plans battered by extreme weather


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