British Columbia

Avalanche risk and accidents close B.C. highways

Heavy snow, accidents and the risk of avalanches is causing problems on several main highways in B.C. including, the Trans-Canada in the Fraser Canyon and the Coquihalla.
Heavy snow on the Coquihalla Highway created dangerous driving conditions near the Great Bear Snowshed early Wednesday morning. (Drive BC)

Heavy snow, accidents and the risk of avalanches are causing problems on several main highways in B.C., including the Trans-Canada in the Fraser Canyon and the Coquihalla.

The Trans-Canada Highway was closed shortly after 6 a.m. PT Wednesday between Boston Bar and Yale because of the high avalanche risk and a vehicle accident. 

It is not yet clear when the route will be re-opened and Boston Bar elementary/secondary school has been closed for the day because teachers will not be able to reach the school.

The Coquihalla Highway 5 — the other main route between Vancouver and the Interior of B.C. — was also closed in several places in both directions because of several vehicle collisions early Wednesday morning. The route re-opened southbound shortly after 7 a.m.

Officials are advising drivers to stay off the route unless absolutely necessary because of the heavy snow and dangerous driving conditions.

The closures come after a series of recent storms dumped a large amount of snow across much of B.C., and the avalanche risk in most mountain areas remains high.

On Tuesday, Highway 99 north of Pemberton was closed because of the extreme avalanche risk in the area.