Mudslides hit highways in B.C. Southern Interior
Ministry of Transportation says snow pack melt contributing to problem
Two mudslides in B.C.'s Southern Interior have created highway delays while the Ministry of Transportation says a melting snow pack is contributing to the problem.
On Friday, a mudslide 10 kilometres east of Keremeos closed Highway 3A. It remained closed Sunday as crews worked to remove debris from the slide.
Work continues to reopen <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BCHwy3A?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BCHwy3A</a> at Yellow Lake after a mudslide on Friday. Road is closed 18.5km east of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Keremeos?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Keremeos</a>. No estimated time of opening. Check <a href="https://twitter.com/DriveBC?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DriveBC</a> website for updates and detour info: <a href="https://t.co/ESezhx9KXb">https://t.co/ESezhx9KXb</a> <a href="https://t.co/VrJuenuXge">pic.twitter.com/VrJuenuXge</a>—@TranBC
DriveBC officials say it's not known when the highway will reopen. In the meantime, there is a detour along Highway 3 and Highway 97.
On Sunday, another mudslide near Rock Creek closed Highway 33 for hours. Around 4 p.m. PT, the road was reopened to single lane alternating traffic. Officials say motorists were facing 20-minute delays to get through.
Just spoke to a young girl at the scene of the mudslide near <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/RockCreek?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#RockCreek</a>. She lives right beside where the ground slid onto Highway 33. Ground started to move started just after noon and crews are on scene now. <a href="https://twitter.com/DriveBC?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DriveBC</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Hwy33?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Hwy33</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Mudslide?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Mudslide</a> <a href="https://t.co/1Vo8ilQCAX">pic.twitter.com/1Vo8ilQCAX</a>—@AlannaCKelly
Ministry of Transporation officials say mudslides are often caused by rapidly melting snow packs. The phenomenon is called Freshet and occurs from April to July in B.C.
Temperatures in the Southern Interior rose to 13 degrees on Sunday.
The ministry says the melting snow packs can become a problem when they melt rapidly, overwhelming stream channels and creating floods. They can destabilize soil and rock and cause mudslides, landslides and rock slides.
The ministry also says maintenance contractors are on patrol in the province looking for creeks showing signs of carrying extra sediment or having low flow levels, which could indicate the possibility of a slide.
Freshet sounds like it could be a scented cleaner or facial tissue... But It's actually snow melt that usually happens from April to July, and can cause flooding, mudslides, landslides and rock slides. How we work with other agencies to manage it: <a href="https://t.co/hirRC7LVxL">https://t.co/hirRC7LVxL</a>—@TranBC