Highway 5 at Coquihalla Summit reopens after avalanche
Drivers warned not to travel unless absolutely necessary due to heavy snow, poor visibility
Highway 5 between Hope and Merritt has reopened in both directions after an avalanche near the Coquihalla Summit Tuesday brought it to a standstill.
However, drivers are warned not to travel unless absolutely necessary due to heavy snowfall and poor visibility, and to exercise caution due to narrowed lane widths and slow moving trucks over the Coquihalla Summit.
The road was closed on both directions after a minor avalanche hit on Tuesday. No one was hurt in the naturally occurring slide, although one vehicle was caught in the snow.
Bob Gilowski of VSA Highway Maintenance Ltd. — the company that services large portions of the highway — said the depth of the avalanche was between half-a-metre and a metre.
More than 200 centimetres of snow has fallen on the Coquihalla's summit in just over a week, said Gilowski.
Even after the road reopens, Gilowski said drivers can expect lots of accumulated snowfall on the highway and plenty of delays.
The highway was closed for avalanche control for a four-hour period on Saturday morning.
Check the DriveBC website for the latest updates.
Watch CBC meteorologist Johanna Wagstaffe's video outlook, and catch her full forecast on CBC News Vancouver at 6.